With only a few days to go until the Festival kicks off, glasses were raised to toast long-time volunteer, Selina Scott who was named the 2018 Ecclesiastical/Wexford Festival Opera Volunteer of the Year. Selina is latest addition to a long list of Festival Volunteers to be honoured since the awards began in 2011.
Selina, a native of Limerick, moved to Wexford over 50 years ago and has been actively involved in her adopted community ever since. As Deputy Principal she was involved in the management of the school and in that role, she took an interest in all aspects of community life in Wexford town.
Selina has been volunteering with Wexford Festival Opera for over 30 years. She has spent most of that time on the bar, and in recent years has moved into ‘Friends’ hospitality. Selina is one of the great characters in the 300+ volunteer force. Full of fun and greets everyone with a warm, welcoming smile. Selina is married to Joe Scott who is also a valued member of the front of house team.
The announcement was made last night by Artistic Director David Agler and Scott Hayes, Head of Relationship Management at Ecclesiastical Insurance from the stage of the National Opera House in front of a capacity crowd of Festival volunteers, who were in attendance for the first public dress rehearsal of this year’s Festival: L’oracolo by Franco Leoni and Mala vita by Umberto Giordano.
Chairman of Wexford Festival Opera, Ger Lawlor, a long-time volunteer himself said, ‘Wexford is often called the world’s friendliest festival. Our volunteers carry the spirit of the town into the opera house and vice versa. Our volunteers give our visiting artists and patrons the famous warm and friendly welcome which makes Wexford a special home from home each year. Selina’s enthusiasm and her unique personal engagement with everyone in the place is infectious and unfailing. This award is well deserved.’
Ecclesiastical Insurance, proud sponsor of the award, is Ireland’s leading specialist insurance company serving the education, faith, heritage and charity sectors, providing insurance and services for those who care about their communities and the environment in which they live and work. Ecclesiastical Insurance is a company that donates a significant proportion of its profits to charity, so it is fitting that they are associated with the award.
Speaking on behalf of Ecclesiastical, Scott Hayes, Head of Relationship Management said, “The role of the Volunteer within the not-for-profit sector cannot be under-estimated. The very survival of many charitable institutions is dependent on their unfailing loyalty. Volunteers at the Wexford Opera Festival are no exception to this rule and their professionalism is a perfect foil to the world class performances that we witness during every festival. Ecclesiastical is delighted to be associated once again with this award and our particular congratulations go to Selina for her contribution which spans over 30 years.”
The 67th Wexford Festival Opera runs from Friday, 19 October to Sunday, 4 November. Full details and tickets on www.wexfordopera.com
The 67th Wexford Festival Opera is supported by grants from the Arts Council, Wexford County Council and Fáilte Ireland/Ireland’s Ancient East.