HOW CAN I JOIN?
Participation in Act Too Studio Opera Workshop is available to Act Too Studio’s vocal students, ages 13-19, by invitation, and to students outside the studio by audition. To arrange an audition, contact Workshop founder/director Melinda Beasi at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Students who wish to audition for the program should prepare two contrasting songs of any kind (art song or “legit” musical theater preferred, but all are acceptable). An audition may last for up to an hour, and may also include coaching, vocal and acting exercises, and an interview. We approach opera as a multi-disciplinary art form, so students with acting and/or dance background are encouraged to mention this at or before the audition. Students may bring their own accompanist or arrange to hire one through the workshop.
Please note that acceptance into the program is contingent on appropriate vocal development, and that most students will not be ready for the demands of the material even at its simplest by the age of 13. Our students sing with their natural voices, and we do not encourage artificially darkening the tone in an attempt to sound more “adult” or “operatic.” Students whose voices are not yet ready to join may audition again the next year. Students accepted into the program will sing music carefully selected to suit their current level of vocal development.
WHAT DOES IT COST?
All students invited into the Opera Workshop should expect to pay up to $250 per school year on the workshop’s bi-weekly classes. Students who study voice and/or acting at Act Too Studio have the rest of their program tuition covered as part of their weekly lesson fees. Students outside the studio pay an additional $520 per year to participate in the school-year program, and an additional $200 if they accept an invitation to participate in the summer opera.
These student fees cover only part of the workshop’s yearly budget, which is supplemented by ticket sales, crowdfunding, fundraising events, and business sponsorships. Students in the workshop are expected to participate in fundraising activities throughout the year in order to keep this program accessible to everyone, including themselves.
WHAT IS MY COMMITTMENT?
Students who join the workshop are expected to participate in a majority of the group’s bi-weekly classes (Sunday afternoons, 2:00-4:00), as well as occasional rehearsals for the workshop’s school-year performances (2-3 per year), scheduled as needed.
Casting for the workshop’s summer opera is separate from the school-year program, and is usually complete at least six months in advance. Students for the summer opera are selected from the school-year program by its director, without audition, and its commitment is much greater. Our summer opera rehearses 6 days a week, up to 8 hours a day, for roughly 6 weeks, beginning at the end of the school year, with performances in early August. Students selected for the summer opera are expected to have no other significant commitments during the rehearsal period, to practice their music outside of rehearsal, and generally treat it as they would a professional performance job. Rehearsals are meticulously scheduled to protect students’ voices. Though the atmosphere can be intense, it is also one of jubilant collaboration, and for those who enjoy challenging, inspiring work, it is guaranteed to be a rewarding time.
Additionally, a small number of creative and technical internships may be available each summer. Workshop alumni receive first consideration for these positions, and should contact the director to indicate interest. Past internships have included stage management, lighting design, costume and hair design, and assistant positions in musical or stage direction.
For more information, contact Workshop director Melinda Beasi at email@example.com.