Students from Hillhurst School creating Doppel during Let's Create an Opera

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 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, the Opera in Schools Tour that brings one-act operas into schools performed by Calgary Opera’s Emerging Artists, and Allegro Group for those opera lovers (or soon to be opera lovers) under 35. 


Discover everything you need to know about opera, and Calgary Opera.

This section will teach you everything you need to know about Calgary opera, and opera - from buying a ticket to shouting Toi Toi Toi! at the end of the performance, and everything in-between. You can also discover our Emerging Artist Development Program. Each season, Calgary Opera 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.

We thrive with your support.

Ticket sales cover less than 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. 


Ambur Braid & Adam Luther in The Magic Flute (Photo by Trudie Lee)


The Cast of Turandot (Photo by Trudie Lee)

Calgary Opera is holding Auditions for Children
for Two Singing Roles during the 2018/19 Season

Do you have a young one that can sing, act, and wants to audition for opera?

Calgary Opera is looking for children to audition for two roles!  Auditions will be held July 9 to 11 at Mamdani Opera Centre.

IMPORTANT: ALL Children intending to audition should have good musical skills, able to follow a conductor, be rhythmically secure and independent, with some stage/acting experience, and comfortable singing with others.  

Character 1: AMAHL, boy soprano playing disabled youngster, 12 years of age. Boys auditioning for Amahl must still be singing with unchanged soprano voices.

Opera: Amahl and the Night Visitors by Gian Carlo Menotti – classic retelling of the Christmas story of the Three Kings from the point of view of the boy Amahl who shares his crutch with the Jesus child and is cured of his disability.

Candidates must be available for rehearsals (scheduled evenings and weekends) November 26 to December 6 and performance evenings December 7, 8, 9 and afternoons December 8 and 9, 2018.

Although stated character age is 12 years, the singer may be younger or older.

Two singers to be chosen who will sing in alternate performances at the Mamdani Opera Centre.

Character #2: MEG, female, 8 years of age, but best sung by someone up to the age of 12.  Active and spirited daughter of mountaineer Beck Weathers who is inspired by a vision of his daughter to save himself from certain death.

Opera: Everest by Joby Talbot and Gene Scheer – Canadian premiere of a moving and inspiring real-life account of the 1996 Mount Everest tragedy.

Candidates must be available for rehearsals (scheduled weekends and evenings) January 7 to 31, 2019 and evening performances February 2, 6, 8, 2019.

Although stated character’s age is 8 years, the singer may be younger or older.Two singers will be auditioned with one candidate performing the role and a second singer as an alternate.


Candidates must be prepared to sing FROM MEMORY and with piano accompaniment FOUR short selections:  

  • THREE excerpts for the role for which they wish to audition.
  • NOTE: one excerpt for the Meg character in Everest requires the candidate to recite/sing while skipping rope.
  • A selection with piano accompaniment of the candidate’s choice suitable for unchanged childrens’ voices in classical style (a simple art song or folk song) or traditional music theatre written for children (think Oliver, Les Miz, Sound of Music, Mary Poppins, etc.). It should be about 1-2 minutes in length and show off the middle and higher part of their voice.   We ask that children don’t audition with hiphop, rock, pop or music theatre pieces written for adults that require belting or operatic pieces written for adults.   Music that a child can sing confidently and that allows them to sound child-like will give the committee the best chance of assessing their voice.
  • To receive a PDF copy of the THREE excerpts to be prepared and sung from memory at the audition, click on the PDF links below:
  • An accompanist will be supplied for the audition.


Once you have read through ALL of the details above, downloaded the musical excerpts required for the audition and looked at them for their suitability, please contact: Nicola Dawes at in order to indicate the role for which you wish to audition AND obtain an audition time. 

Calgary Opera Chorus

Presently under the musical leadership of one of the country’s most respected chorus directors, Sandra Atkinson, the Calgary Opera Chorus remains a fundamental component in Calgary Opera’s aim to enhance our community and spur civic pride through a variety of opera experiences. Many long-time chorus members return every year, not only because of their love of performing, but also because of how much they enjoy working with Sandy. Other benefits include receiving a small stipend and complimentary tickets to Calgary Opera’s mainstage productions.

For more information about the Chorus, please contact Nicola Dawes at


A “Super” is the equivalent of an “Extra” in the movie world. It is an acting role without any dialogue or singing involved. If you are a budding actor wanting more stage experience this is the perfect opportunity for you. Or even if you are simply looking to spend time on stage surrounded by wonderful singers and music, please contact Nicola Dawes (contact information below). We are always looking for interested and able bodied men, women and children to be Supers who are not members of Canadian Actors Equity Association. 


Chorus members are required to attend music rehearsals for 4 or 5 weeks, depending on the opera. These rehearsals take place on Mondays and Wednesdays from 7pm to 10pm. Additionally, they are required to attend staging rehearsals during the 3 weeks leading up to mainstage productions.

The time commitment for Supers varies with each production. In general, Supers must be available:

5 weeks before opening night: 2 to 3 evenings per week for staging rehearsals

Tech week (the week before the production opens): every evening at the Jubilee

The performances: must be available to attend all performances


Chorus members & Supers are paid an honorarium and are offered complimentary tickets to either the dress rehearsal or the Wednesday performance of the given production.

For more information contact:

Nicola Dawes, Executive Assistant & Artist Relations