Emerging Opera Composer Residency

Chicago Opera Theater opens applications for its Vanguard Initiative Emerging Opera Composer Program for the September 2022 – April 2024 cycle. This is a two-year development program that places an emphasis on building skills and connections for emerging opera composers in Chicago and the Midwest. Composers in the program will have established and demonstrable skills in instrumental composition, vocal composition, and orchestration (whether “traditional” or non-traditional), and will have a strong interest in dramatic storytelling through music, but may or may not have experience with opera or theatrical production. During the program residency, composers are required to reside in the greater Chicago area.

Each year, COT will invite one Emerging Composer to join the company for a two-year residency, to coincide with two COT production seasons. At any given time, there will be a total of two composers in residence – one in their first year and one in their second. All events, performances, rehearsals, and conferences attended will be followed by debrief/feedback sessions with the composers and COT leadership. Composers’ activities during their two-year participation in the program will be tailored to a given composer’s needs and re-evaluated regularly.

Application Requirements:

Cover letter explaining why the candidate feels passionately about dramatic storytelling and why they are interested in COT’s Vanguard Initiative program specifically

Detailed resume or CV, including any experience as a performer and any other experience related to opera

List of repertoire composed and performed, including performing ensembles

Sample scores, including examples of vocal writing and of instrumental writing for an ensemble of at least 7-10 players (some examples of writing for larger orchestral forces preferred, but not required). The inclusion of recordings or other materials as part of the application is accepted, but not required.

Contact information for 3-5 references

All materials should be emailed to vanguard@cot.org by December 1, 2021. If you have submitted materials in the past we encourage you to resend them with updated and current information. A stipend is provided to participating composers. The current stipend amount is $16,000 for the 9-month residency period, subject to funding renewal for future seasons.

Please visit www.cot.org for more information.


Deadline 1 December 2021

Website chicagooperatheater.org


December 1


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