A short answer to this question could be:
“The Friends of the Icelandic Opera is a society of people who are interested in opera. Its main aim is to support the work of the IO through activities designed to stimulate interest in the IO’s current or forthcoming productions, and it works with the IO to do this. In addition, the Friends work to stimulate general interest in opera in Iceland. There are currently about 700 Friends of the IO.” A more detailed answer follows below.
Though the Friends of the Icelandic Opera is a young organisation, its roots go back to 1989, when the Patrons of the Icelandic Opera was founded. As an organisation, the Patrons were abolished in 2000 and replaced by the Friends. The change was made as part of the general restructuring of the IO and its management. All former Patrons became Friends automatically when the new society was formed.
The Friends are an independent group which is not responsible for the running of the Icelandic Opera, as was the case with the Patrons. The main purpose of the Friends is to support the work of the IO through publicity activities and events to enhance the appreciation of opera. These are organised in connection with the IO’s current or forthcoming productions and in collaboration with the IO. In addition, the Friends aim at stimulating general interest in opera in Iceland.
The Friends are mainly active in organising educational and promotional events for their members and the general public. They have also secured priority booking arrangements for Friends for seats for the IO’s productions.
The IO has stated that the Friends are its most important target audience group, and that it intends to make every effort to ensure good relations with the society.