Opera Foundation: Grants for Music

OVERVIEW: The Opera Foundation supports young American opera singers by funding their study with select European opera companies.

IP TAKE: The foundation seeks notably talented young American opera singers who place value on international study with some of the best in the world. It funds four scholarships each year for study with renowned European opera companies.

PROFILE: Originally known as the American Berlin Opera Foundation when it was established in 1986, this entity, which grants scholarships to young American opera singers is now known simply as the Opera Foundation. The foundation seeks “to support young American singers abroad and build cross-cultural bridges between the United States and other important opera supporting countries.”

This is because in the years since its founding, the group has expanded its international partners. What started with one placement with Deutsche Oper Berlin (hence the foundation’s original name) expanded in 2008 to include Teatro Regio Torino (Italy). In 2012 the foundation added a third placement with Bayerische Staatsoper (Munich, Germany).

All in all, the Opera Foundation has awarded more than 50 opera study scholarships for young American students (ages 18 – 30) to learn with and from these European opera companies, with a particular focus on voice coaching and linguistics.

Currently the Opera Foundation provides four scholarships each year. The first step is to submit an application, due mid-fall (along with an application fee). Those who make the cut will need to attend a live performance audition in New York City.

Getting one of these scholarships is very competitive. The good news is, for those who succeed in winning a scholarship, the Opera Foundation’s program places great value on “the spirit of cultural exchange between the United States and beyond,” which is reflected in its partnerships with its three European partner opera companies—and the foundation is also looking to expand with new partnerships too.


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