Meet the opera stars of tomorrow

Each season, Calgary Opera’s Emerging Artist Development Program provides up to eight young singers with the opportunity to study and perform under a highly prestigious professional staff of teachers and performers.  This program acts as a bridge between post-secondary education and the professional opera world.

Enbridge believes in making communities culturally vibrant through investments in the arts. We thank them for their generous support of our Emerging Artist program.

Carmen Photo by Trudie Lee

We thrive with your support.

Ticket sales cover about a third of the cost of producing live opera, even on sold-out shows. We rely on government funding, sponsorships from corporations, and charitable donations to ensure that opera is alive and well for our community. 


Jennifer Sproule and Allison Cecilia Arends in Calgary Opera's The Brothers Grimm at Glendale Elementary School. Photo by Alex Bonyun.

Building generations of opera lovers.

Education programs are an essential part of what we do, enriching the experiences of our current patrons and building audiences for tomorrow through our student and young people outreach. This includes great programs like Let’s Create an Opera that gives students the opportunity to create their own original opera and the Opera in Schools Tour that brings one-act operas into schools performed by Calgary Opera’s Emerging Artists.

 Repsol believes the arts can make a positive difference to the lives of young people. We thank them for their generous support of our Education programs. 

The Canadian premiere of Silent Night (2014). Photo by Trudie Lee. The Canadian premiere of Silent Night (2014). Photo by Trudie Lee.

Contact Us

Mamdani Opera Centre
1315 - 7 Street SW
Calgary, AB T2R 1A5
Phone: 403-262-7286

Let's Create an Opera

Let’s Create an Opera has been successfully teaching children about the process of opera creation for over 10 years. For the school involved it is a full year of creative and engaging team work towards a final product, a completely original opera.

This year, Let's Create an Opera will be in the following schools:

Acadia Elementary school

Librettist and Director: Jacqueline Russell

Composer: Scott Godin

Alexander Ferguson Elementary School

Librettist and Director: Meg Braem

Composer: Veronica Tapia

Hillhurst Elementary School

Librettist: Aaron Caotes

Composer: John Abram


Last season's schools and operas were: 

Rosemont Elementary- The Wilds

Music by Darin Gregson and the Students
Libretto by Jacqueline Russell and the Students
Directed by Jacqueline Russell

Penny and her friends must journey together into The Wilds (a magical and terrifying place where all fears live) in order to rescue her little brother Jimmy. Along the way they must face Ninja Ballerinas, Royal Zombies and Frogs with Mustaches.  With the help of their friend Carrot the Owl and the power of encouraging words, these friends learn to face their fears and in doing so, discover their courage. 

St. Phillips Elementary - Tiny Little Footprints (in a great big world)

Music by John Abram and the Students
Libretto by Col Cseke and the Students
Directed by Mike Griffin


A tiny family of tiny people have been safely living in Thomas's messy closet, but when they're mistaken for pests they are forced to move! Setting out for the big wide world for the first time they must face their fears, stay safe, and more importantly open themselves up to the world, it's many creatures, and each other.

Douglas Harkness Elementary  - Mars

Music by Arthur Bachmann and the Students
Libretto by Aaron Coates and the Students
Directed by Valmai Goggin

Two families, the Singhs and the Trans, move to Mars looking for a new life with new possibilities. When they arrive they find a planet in turmoil. The garbage disposal workers are on strike and the colony is a mess! The adults can't agree on anything, so it's time for the kids to step in.

If you would like your school to be considered for this great program, please contact:

Emily Forrest, Education Coordinator

Calgary Opera will provide your school with:

  • The application deadline for the following school year is December 1
  • Program introduction for teachers with guidance on integrating activities into the classroom and curriculum
  • An opera education presentation for the whole school including vocal demonstrations by Calgary Opera Emerging Artists
  • A playwright to collaborate with students on writing the opera's libretto
  • A composer to work with your music teacher and students to create the score
  • A stage director to guide your students in staging the final performance
  • A lighting and sound kit for use during your production, and a great rate on one of our technicians to operate the equipment
  • Complimentary tickets for your Grade 5 and 6 students to attend a Calgary Opera dress rehearsal

“The Let’s Create an Opera program is an amazing opportunity for our students and staff to experience a genre of music that is often less accessible in our small community,” says teacher and program participant Tashina Hanrath. “The students are thrilled to be creating something that they had previously attributed only to experts or historical arts and are looking at opera in a whole new way. We integrated our opera experience into our AISI project, using the arts to further unlock reading comprehension and literature for our students. As each part of this process unfolds, my excitement to see the next step increases.”