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Young opera singers from around the United States, Canada, and Puerto Rico will compete for $15,000 cash prizes and the chance to perform on the stage of The Metropolitan Opera House when the Met’s National Council Auditions launches its 65th annual auditions program this fall. Over 1,500 singers between the ages of 20 and 30 will participate in the National Council Auditions, the longest-running singing competition in the country. Aspiring singers who hope to become 2017-18 Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions Winners must compete in four rounds of auditions. The first level of the competition will be held in 42 Districts.
The Utah District Auditions will be held on November 11, 2017 in the Libby Gardner Concert Hall on the University of Utah Campus from 11:00AM to 1:00 PM and 2:00 to 5:00PM and are open to the public free of admission charge. The winner(s) of the Utah District will compete in the Rocky Mountain Region Auditions on January 28, 2018. Approximately 20 Region first place winners receive a cash prize and will be sponsored to go to New York in April for the National Council Auditions Semi-Finals. There, approximately eight to ten Semi-Finalists will sing in a closed competition, accompanied by piano on the Met stage, for a place as a National Council Auditions Finalist. The Finalists will then perform at the Grand Finals Concert on Sunday, April 29, 2018 on the stage of the Metropolitan Opera, and approximately four to six singers will be selected as National Council Auditions Winners. The winners will each receive a $15,000 prize and invaluable career-making exposure.
Members of the Met’s artistic staff and other professionals from the opera world judge the auditions and give each singer feedback through all levels of the competition, which includes career advice and ideas on future prospects. The judges for the November 11, 2017 Utah District Auditions will be Vera Lúcia Calábria, Stage Director; Matthew Horner, Senior Vice President and Director of Vocal Division of IMG Artists; Kevin Langan, bass. Ms. Calábria will remain in Utah to give a masterclass for University of Utah students on Monday, November 13 from 2:00 to 4:00 p.m. in the Thompson Chamber Music Hall.
Hundreds of volunteers across North America help the Met organize and fund the National Council Auditions in their respective Districts and Regions. They also help the Met raise nearly $500,000 in prize money that the National Council Auditions awards annually at the District, Regional and national levels of the competition. The 2017-18 Utah District Auditions are supported in part by the Utah Division of Arts & Museums, with funding from the State of Utah and National Endowment for the Arts, as well as by the Salt Lake City Arts Council, and by the residents of Salt Lake County through the Zoo, Arts & Parks (ZAP) Program.
Past National Council winners include many of the world’s greatest opera singers, such as Kathleen Battle, Jessye Norman, Teresa Stratas, Shirley Verrett, and Frederica von Stade, as well as some of opera’s best-known contemporary stars. Current Met singers who were winners in the National Council Auditions include sopranos Renée Fleming, Angela Meade, Susanna Phillips, and Patricia Racette; mezzo-sopranos Stephanie Blythe, Susan Graham, and Dolora Zajick; and baritones Thomas Hampson, and Eric Owens. On average, nearly one hundred National Council Audition alumni sing in Met performances every opera season.
Applications for the MONC Utah District Auditions are being accepted through October 31, 2017. Additional information about the MONC Utah District Auditions, including application information for singers and full biographies and photos of the judges, is available at www.UtahMONCauditions.org or by contacting Gunter Radinger at (801) 661-2704 or firstname.lastname@example.org