The 35th Annual Opera Competition
Semi-final Competition: Saturday, May 18, 2013
Final Competition: Sunday, May 19, 2013
1. The Competition is open to singers who are currently permanent residents of the United States of America.
2. All contestants must be between 21-35 years old as of May 19, 2013.
3. A non-refundable application fee of $25 (early bird) or $40 (standard) is required of all contestants.
4. The Application Deadline is Friday, April 19, 2013 at 5:00 pm CDT. Note: Acceptance of applications will stop at 5:00 pm CDT on Friday, April 19, regardless of postmark. The Early Bird deadline is Friday, March 22, 2013 at 5:00 pm.
5. Incomplete applications will not be considered. Fees will not be refunded.
6. All applications must be sent to via U.S. Mail or through YapTracker (link: http://www.yaptracker.com/applications/opera-birmingham-2013)
Attn: Opera Competition
3601 Sixth Avenue South
Birmingham, AL 35222
7. All entrants will be given consideration for casting in future Opera Birmingham productions as well as productions of the companies represented by the panel of judges.
8. All entrants must complete the application and send it to the address above or submit online through YapTracker, along with:
A. A professional resume
B. A recent photo or professional headshot
C. Proof of Age (examples include a copy of driver’s license or birth certificate)
D. A recording of two of the arias listed on the application (see #13)
E. Payment of the correct amount in the form of
- check or money order made payable to Opera Birmingham
- Visa, MC, Amex, or Discover card number, CVV code, Expiration date, and signature (on the application)
9. Entrants must be prepared to sing from memory four contrasting arias:
A. One aria in Italian
B. One aria in English
C. One aria in either French or German
D. One aria in any language of the singer’s choosing
10. All arias must be sung in the original key.
11. Translations from another language into English are NOT recommended for the English selection.
12. There can be NO changes to the four aria selections after the application is submitted.
13. Entrants must submit a recording of two (2) arias from the four offerings. Accompaniment must be piano only.
14. A panel will review the entries and select 20 semi-finalists. Opera Birmingham will notify the semi-finalists chosen by April 30.
15. Semi-finalists must provide sheet music by US mail or e-mail for all four required arias by May 10 to Opera Birmingham. No faxes of music will be accepted.
16. Opera Birmingham will provide accompanists for the semifinal competition. Singers may bring their own accompanist at their own expense.
17. Semi-finalists will have a private rehearsal room with a piano and accompanist for a 10-minute rehearsal prior to their assigned competition time.
18. Semi-finalists who are late for the assigned competition time will be disqualified from competition.
19. Opera Birmingham will choose two arias for the finalists to sing from the list of four submitted.
20. Opera Birmingham will provide the accompanist for the final competition. Opera Birmingham will provide rehearsal time for each of the 5 finalists prior to the final competition.
21. Opera Birmingham will set the order of singers for the finals.
22. Previous first prize winners of the Opera Birmingham Competition are ineligible for further competition.
23. Opera Birmingham reserves the right to disqualify contestants for any misrepresentation on their applications. All decisions by Opera Birmingham and its judges are final.
24.For additional information, please call the Opera Birmingham office at (205) 322-6737 between the hours of 9 A.M. and 5 P.M., Monday through Friday. You may also email Justin Bing with the subject line Opera Competition if you have additional questions. Thank you for submitting your application!
2012 Winner Spotlight: Matthew Newlin, Tenor
Matthew Newlin, recent winner of the Opera Birmingham Competition, returns to the The Santa Fe Opera Apprentice Program where he will perform Condulmiero in Rossini’s Maometto II and cover Matteo in Strauss’ Arabella. He has also been accepted into Florida Grand Opera’s Young Artist Studio for the 2012-13 season where he will perform 1st Priest and Armored Guard (Tamino cover) in Die Zauberflöte and The Notary (Elvino cover) in Bellini’s La Sonnambula. Last season Matthew performed The English Tailor in Menotti’s The Last Savage and covered The Captain in Wozzeck at Santa Fe and performed Tamino while completing a Professional Diploma in Opera at the Chicago College of Performing Arts.
Among Matthew’s other successes in Chicago were his performances in Chicago Opera Vanguard’s production of Andy Vores’ No Exit, which garnered him this favorable review from Chicago Classical Review: “Matthew Newlin displayed a pleasing, pliant tenor and easy stage manner... singing his solo opportunities with warmth and notably clear diction.” He is also a winner of the American Opera Society’s Scholarship Competition and a 3rd place winner of The Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions Regional Finals.
Other operatic roles include le Mari in Poulenc’s Les mamelles de Tirésias, Frederick in The Pirates of Penzance, The Teapot in Ravel’s L’enfant et les Sortilèges, Satyavan in Holst’s Sāvitri, and the leads in Stravinsky’s Mavra and Janáček’s The Diary of One Who Disappeared, which he also covered at Chicago Opera Theater. His concert appearances with orchestra include Vaughan-Williams’On Wenlock Edge, Mozart’s Requiem, and Messiah.
Matthew is from Georgetown, IL and currently studies with soprano Judith Haddon.
Winner: Matthew Newlin, Tenor
Second Place: Bray Wilkins, Tenor
Third Place: Christina Villaverde, Soprano
Fourth Place: Sasha Hashemipour, Mezzo-soprano
Fifth Place: David Blalock, Tenor
Audience Favorite Award: Bray Wilkins, Tenor
Opera Birmingham’s community outreach events are geared to provide underserved members of the community with opportunities to experience opera firsthand. Some of the organizations Opera Birmingham has worked with recently are North Roebuck Elementary School, Scrollworks, a music school which provides free lessons for underprivileged and inner-city children; New Pilgrim Towers, affordable housing for seniors; Brookdale Place senior living facility; and St. Anne’s Home residential treatment facility for women.