Metropolitan Opera auditions to be held at Columbia College

Photo Credit: Knoxville Opera

Photo Credit: Knoxville Opera

Rebecca Craanen, staff writer

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Young opera singers will compete in the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions in Spears Concert Hall from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., Jan. 27.

    The competition is divided into stages: district, regional and national competitions. Winners of the district competition will move on to a regional competition and finally to national semi-finals and finals, which will be held in New York City.

    Singers from the ages of 20 to 30 will choose five arias in at least two different languages. Aria is the word for what amounts to a solo from an opera.

    “This is America’s most prestigious competition for young professional opera singers,” Diane Amos Ph.D., assistant professor of Voice and Musical Theatre, said.  “People come from every state here. South Carolina is one of the last ones to schedule their round for the District Competition.”

    The auditioning singers will come to the college from as far away as Hawaii and New York.

Photo Credit: Lincoln Center

   “It’s the best singing you’ll hear in the region every year,” Amos said. The National Council invites the public to attend the competition to listen to the various arias chosen by the participants. Members of the Columbia College community are encouraged to attend the performances, Amos said.

    “It’s really cool here for us at Columbia College because we get to host it. We have a team of students who take care of the young singers,” said Amos, who has performed operas professionally in Germany and functions as Columbia College’s host for the Metropolitan Opera council members.

    Performers are competing in hopes of starting a career in the historical art of opera.  

    Among Columbia College alumni, the most recent singer to be recognized by the Metropolitan National Council was Latoya Adams, 2013 graduate with a Bachelor of Arts in Music, who won the 2014 Encouragement Award given by the Metropolitan National Council.

    When asked if she wanted to say anything else to the hopefuls, Amos said, “Competitions are funny things because not winning doesn’t mean that you won’t still have a great career. A lot of it depends on the day and the judge.”

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