Opera

Northern Arizona University Opera Theater provides many enriching operatic experiences for both undergraduate and graduate performers.

About the program

Our goal is to provide singers with the skills necessary to perform on the operatic stage with confidence and to prepare them for further study in the field of opera. Singers have the opportunity to work with Nando Schellen, whose enduring passion for opera led to a professional career spanning more than four decades. Artist voice teachers are dedicated educators who bring a wealth of international professional operatic experience to NAU. Fully-staged opera productions with orchestra and opera scenes programs are performed in the original language. Foreign language coaching is provided by faculty in the College of Arts and Letters.

All roles for full productions are double cast, when possible and opportunities exist for students to learn about important aspects of production, such as supertitles, props and assistant directing. Supportive classes include include Movement and Acting for Singers, Opera History, and an elective independent study in opera directing. Voice teachers assist with opera coaching in private lessons.

Ardrey Memorial Auditorium, with a seating capacity of 1400 and with an orchestra pit capable of holding a full size Wagner orchestra is the primary venue for opera productions. For smaller productions and scenes programs the more intimate Prochnow Auditorium and Ashurst Hall are used.