Aspen Music Festival And School

Aspen Opera Center – VoiceBack To Programs of Study

Important Information
  • Program offered full-session only
  • Fellowships and scholarships available
  • Live audition and audio audition recording required
  • Mandatory live auditions take place in November
  • Head shot and letters of recommendation required
Fees & Deadlines
Deadline: October 29, 2017
Applications will be accepted beginning September 15, 2017

Application Fee

$25 if you apply by October 1, 2017
$60 if you apply between October 2 and October 29, 2017
2018 Teaching Faculty

Limited Length of Residence

Audition Dates

Houston (Rice University)
November 6-7
Los Angeles (University of Southern California)
November 8
Chicago (Northwestern University)
November 10-11
New York City (NOLA Studios)
November 13-18

Edward Berkeley, director
Elizabeth Buccheri, head of music

The Aspen Opera Center offers a wide range of exciting performance opportunities. These include: two fully-staged productions in the historic Wheeler Opera House; weekly public Opera Scenes Master Classes; vocal chamber music performances; and house concerts. All of these performances are sung exclusively by AOC singers and are coached and led by distinguished conductors and directors.

Performances during the 2018 Wheeler season will include new productions of:

  • ROSSINI: Il barbiere de Siviglia conducted by Christopher Allen
  • OFFENBACH: Les contes d’Hoffman conducted by George Manahan

In addition, AOC will present a semi-staged performance of Leonard Bernstein’s Trouble in Tahiti conducted by Scott Terrell. Eight public Opera Scenes Master Classes with director Edward Berkeley will give AOC singers the opportunity to appear publicly with conductor and either piano or orchestra. Two of these sessions are presented with full orchestra in collaboration with the Aspen Conducting Academy. The mentors for the orchestral classes will be Jane Glover and Robert Spano.

Fellowship recipients sing the principal roles in AOC productions and are considered Young Artists of the Aspen Opera Center. They are expected to arrive having fully learned the roles in which they are cast and will then have final coachings in preparation for staging. Fellows are an integral part of AOC and as such will be featured in scene programs and will be involved in other facets of the Aspen Opera Center.

Those who come to Aspen without fellowship or a principal role are invited as Studio Artists. These students may be cast as covers, sing chorus, and participate in scenes programs. Studio Artists will be intimately involved in other facets of the AOC and additional performance opportunities may be offered. Studio Artists and Young Artists work together in classes, rehearsals, and performances with different objectives while working toward the same larger goal.  

Aspen Opera Center singers also participate in an intensive curriculum of weekly voice lessons, vocal master classes taught by resident artist-faculty and guest artists, opera music, acting, song repertory, dance classes, rehearsals, auditioning and professional-orientation workshops, and individual music and dramatic coaching. In different sessions, singers will work both in groups and individually with Diane Zola, artistic administrator of the Houston Grand Opera, in addition to resident artist-faculty, as well as with Gayletha Nichols, director of the Metropolitan Opera’s National Council Auditions. All members of AOC are expected to sing in one opera chorus and to provide technical-support hours as part of their contribution to the program. A select number of singers will participate in song recitals in which students prepare repertoire under the guidance of AOC artist-faculty.

How to Apply


  • Resume required
  • Head shot required
  • Two letters of recommendation required, at least one from a musical authority


Audition Repertoire

  • Please Note: Recorded Audition AND Live Audition required
    • Recorded Audition
      AUDIO recording of two arias of contrasting styles (one in English and one in a foreign language). If you are interested in a particular role, it is strongly suggested that you sing an appropriate aria. Please upload your recordings in TWO INDIVIDUAL AUDIO TRACKS.
    • Live Audition
      The repertoire selected above in addition to a one-to two-minute monologue. This may be dramatic, comedic, poetic, contemporary or classical in nature. Any applicants living outside of the U.S. or Canada should contact the Office of Student Services.


    Recording Specifications
    • Recordings must be recent: made no more than three months prior to application.
    • Each excerpt or work must be sung through without stopping.
    • All excerpts and works must be uploaded in the order listed.
    • Please label each upload with the name of the excerpt or work. DO NOT include your name.


Robert Spano, Music Director

Alan Fletcher, President and CEO