After a cross-country search for Canada’s next opera star, six finalists have been handpicked to take part in a rigorous opera boot camp in Toronto.
The six opera hopefuls, hailing from Quebec to Calgary, are Paul Abelha (construction worker, Hamilton), Elaine Jean Brown (part-time model, Calgary), Robyn Hefferton (activist / entrepreneur, Calgary), Phillip Holmes (student, Norway Bay, QC), Donna Jacobs (day care worker, South Shore, QC) and Laura Landauer (Celine Dion and Cher impersonator, Toronto). The candidates vary in background and experience, but they all share the same goal; to be the next “Bathroom Diva”!
In the series premiere that aired Saturday, February 10 on Bravo!, judges Mary Lou Fallis, Tom Diamond, Liz Upchurch and Daniel Lichti audition wannabe singers in Toronto, Vancouver, Edmonton, Montreal and Halifax. The six finalists are then thrown into opera boot camp, an exhaustive three-week crash course where they receive intensive voice training, acting technique, stage fighting and more than 12-hours-a-week of one-on-one coaching with opera’s finest. Antics ensue, flirtations blossom, conflicts arise – and divas are born.
Can Laura shake her Celine Dion-isms and find her own voice? Mother Elaine vs. daughter Robyn – who will make it further? Does Phil need a “Henry Higgins” to polish his country-boy ways? Can Donna bolster her self-confidence and find her inner diva? Will Paul build his dream and leave the construction site behind?
At the end of each episode, the remaining competitors showcase their newly-polished operatic skills at various venues in Toronto, including the Bravo! Rehearsal Hall, the Robert Gill Theatre and the historic Elgin Theatre. The judge’s criteria for selecting a winner is not only based on the protégés’ operatic singing abilities, but on their facility to learn and understand a new language such as Italian; how well they perform theatricality; and, above all, their ability to apply the coaches’ advice and critique.
Bathroom Divas culminates in the final episode with one singer selected as the winner and awarded the ultimate prize – a debut performance at The Orpheum Theatre with the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra in front of an audience of thousands.
Bathroom Divas airs Saturdays at 9pm ET / 6pm PT, with encore presentations Tuesdays at 8pm ET / 5pm PT.