Grant programs
Except where noted, these grant opportunities are available only to Professional Company Members of OPERA America.
Since the inception of its granting program, OPERA America has awarded a total of nearly $18 million to the opera field to support the work of opera creators, companies and administrators. Currently, OPERA America awards more than $2 million each year through a range of grant initiatives. In addition, OPERA America provides travel grants that allow members to participate in network forums and attend performances of new North American works.
Innovation Grants
Generously funded by the Ann and Gordon Getty Foundation
OPERA America’s Innovation Grants support vibrant Professional Company Members in implementing innovative projects in opera’s most important areas of practice, including artistic vitality, audience experience, organizational effectiveness and community connections. The program enables companies to increase their investment in experimentation and innovation, and contribute to field-wide learning. Grants will support projects that are (a) efforts new to the field; (b) adaptations or applications of strategies that have been implemented elsewhere, but are new to the applicant company or its community; and (c) refinements or enhancements to proven organizational strategies that merit continued development. OPERA America will assist with evaluation and documentation, and disseminate resources to share lessons learned from the projects.

The 2018 Innovation Grant application cycle is now closed. For a list of grant recipients, click here. The next application cycle will open in fall 2018.

Application available online: Fall 2018
Intent to apply deadline: November 8, 2018, at 11:59 p.m. EST
Application deadline: January 28, 2019, at 11:59 p.m. EST
Adjudication and notification: March 2019
Grant start date: July 1, 2019

Guidelines:2018 Innovation Grant Guidelines (PDF)
Companies that describe multiyear approaches may request consideration for two-year grants. Payment in the second year will be at the same level as the first. A company may only have one active Innovation grant at any time. Recipients of two-year grants in 2017 may not reapply for Innovation funding until 2019 (fiscal year 2020).

2018 Worksheets:Intent to apply questions (PDF), application questions (PDF), budget template (XLSX),
Apply: All applications must be submitted online at operaamerica.org/GrantsDashboard.
The Opera Fund: Civic Practice Grants
Civic Practice Grants build on learning from the Audience Development program. This new grant program is intended to support Professional Company Members’ efforts to learn more about civic priorities within their communities, to develop relationships with leading arts and non-arts organizations, and to discover and deliver services that strengthen both the community and the opera company.

Application available online: Summer 2018
Intent to Apply deadline: September 5, 2018 at 11:59 p.m. EDT
Application deadline: October 2, 2018 at 11:59 p.m. EDT
Applications adjudicated: November 2018
Grantees notified: December 2018
Current grant period: January 2019 – August 2020

The Opera Fund: Repertoire Development
Repertoire Development Grants assist OPERA America Professional Company Members and their partners in meeting the special costs incurred by developing and producing new North American opera and music-theater works. A PCM may apply as a sole applicant or as part of a consortium. Grant range:
  • Up to $65,000 for consortium support
  • Up to $35,000 for sole applicant support
The 2017–2018 Repertoire Development application cycle is now closed. For a list of grant recipients, click here. The next application cycle will open in fall 2019.
Opera Grants for Female Composers
Supported by the Virginia B. Toulmin Foundation
Opera Grants for Female Composers provide support for the development of new operas by women, both directly to individual composers and to OPERA America Professional Company Members, advancing the important objective of increasing diversity across the field.
  • DISCOVERY GRANTS
    OPERA America invites proposals for grants of up to $15,000 from female composers able to document their ability to compose theatrical works for the trained voice and instrumental ensemble. In addition, grant recipients will have the opportunity to meet leaders in the field and participate in forum meetings and annual conferences.

    The 2018 Discovery Grant application cycle is now closed. For a list of grant recipients, click here The next application cycle will open in fall 2018.

    Application available online: Summer 2018
    Intent to apply deadline: November 28, 2018, at 11:59 p.m. EST (required for access to full application)
    Application deadline: January 7, 2018, at 11:59 p.m. EST
    Applications adjudicated: February 2019
    Grantees notified: February 2019

    Guidelines:2018 Discovery Grant Guidelines (PDF)
    2018 Worksheets:Intent to apply questions (PDF), application questions (PDF), budget template) (XLSX)
    Apply: All applications must be submitted online at operaamerica.org/GrantsDashboard.

  • COMMISSIONING GRANTS
    This program helps OPERA America Professional Company Members to commission works by talented women who compose for the opera stage. Grants cover up to 50 percent of a female composer’s fee for a full production of a commissioned work, with awards of up to $50,000.

    The Commissioning Grants are only open to OPERA America Professional Company Members based in the United States.

    The 2018 Commissioning Grant application cycle is now closed. Grantees will be notified in June 2018. The next application cycle will open in spring 2019.

    Application available online: Summer 2018
    Intent to apply deadline: March 27, 2019, at 11:59 p.m. EDT
    Application deadline: April 24, 2019, at 11:59 p.m. EDT
    Applications adjudicated: May 2019
    Grantees notified: June 2019

    Guidelines:2018 Commissioning Grant Guidelines (PDF)
    2018 Worksheets:Intent to apply questions (PDF), application questions (PDF)
    Apply: All applications must be submitted online at operaamerica.org/GrantsDashboard.

The Robert L.B. Tobin Director-Designer Showcase
Supported by The Tobin Theatre Arts Fund
This program is intended to bring new talent to the forefront and connect promising directors and designers with those who are in a position to advance their careers. OPERA America will consider applications from director- or designer-driven teams of artists. Each team must create a production proposal for an opera chosen from a curated list.

Selected finalists will be funded to further develop their production designs for presentation at Opera Conference 2019. The next cycle will open in summer 2018 for presentation at Opera Conference 2019. For a list of previous grant recipients, click here.

Application available online: June 2018
Intent to Apply deadline: August 20, 2018 at 11:59 p.m. EDT
Application deadline: September 27, 2018 at 11:59 p.m. EDT
Applications adjudicated: October 2018
Grantees notified: November 2018

The Director-Designer Showcase is open to emerging opera and theater artists, regardless of membership status with OPERA America.

Guidelines: 2017 Director-Designer Showcase Grant Guidelines (PDF)
Application Questions: 2017 Director-Designer Showcase Grant Application Questions (PDF)
Apply: All Applications must be submitted online.

New Works Exploration Grants
Supported by The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation
Please note that funds for this fiscal year have been fully exhausted.
New Works Exploration Grants provide travel and lodging support for representatives of OPERA America Professional Company Members in the U.S. to attend performances or workshops of new American works. During the trip, the recipient must meet with the creative artists and administrators responsible for the piece’s creation. The goals of the program are to broaden awareness of new American opera and music-theater works across the field and to create relationships among opera companies interested in pursuing the creation and production of new works. Grants cover the cost of transportation and lodging. There is no limit to the number of grants a company may apply for during fiscal year 2018 (July 1, 2017, to June 30, 2018); however, the total amount granted to a single company cannot exceed $3,000 during the year.

Application deadline: Applications are accepted on a rolling basis until all funds are exhausted for the fiscal year.
Grant funds for FY18 are now exhausted.
Guidelines: 2017–2018 New Works Exploration Grant Guidelines and Instructions (PDF)
Apply: Applications for FY19 Exploration Grants will open June 1, 2018.
Reporting form: Downloadable Reporting Form (DOCX)

New Work Featured Presentations at the New Works Forum 2019
Supported by The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation
OPERA America invites applications for production support of new work performances, readings and workshops concurrent with the programming of the 2019 New Works Forum from January 11–14, 2019, at the National Opera Center in New York City. Featured presentations may be excerpts of complete new works that have premiered since January 2016, excerpts of complete works that are scheduled to premiere over the next two seasons, or selections from works being developed.

Application available online: June 2018
Application deadline: July 11, 2018 at 11:59 p.m. EDT
Grantees notified: July 2018

Index of Grants

Upcoming Deadlines
JUL
11
New Works Featured Presentations
Application deadline
AUG
20
The Robert L.B. Tobin Director-Designer Showcase
Intent to apply deadline
SEP
5
The Opera Fund: Civic Practice Grants
Intent to apply deadline
SEP
27
The Robert L.B. Tobin Director-Designer Showcase
Application deadline
OCT
2
The Opera Fund: Civic Practice Grants
Application deadline
NOV
8
Innovation Grants
Intent to apply deadline
NOV
28
Opera Grants for Female Composers: Discovery
Intent to apply deadline
JAN
7
Opera Grants for Female Composers: Discovery
Application deadline
JAN
24
Innovation Grants
Application deadline
MAR
27
Opera Grants for Female Composers: Commissioning
Intent to apply deadline
APR
24
Opera Grants for Female Composers: Commissioning
Application deadline

Grant Support
OPERA America’s grant opportunities are made possible through the generosity of The Opera Fund donors and 40th Anniversary Annual Fund donors, The Tobin Theatre Arts Fund, The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, The Ann and Gordon Getty Foundation and The Virginia B. Toulmin Foundation.

The Opera Fund, launched by The National Endowment for the Arts, is funded by:
  • The Helen F. Whitaker Fund
  • Lee Day Gillespie
  • Lloyd and Mary Ann Gerlach
  • The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation
  • The William and Flora Hewlett Foundation
  • The James S. and John L. Knight Foundation

THE ORGANIZATION EXPERIENCE OPERA RESOURCES
THE NATIONAL OPERA CENTER EVENTS FACILITIES AND SERVICES
BECOME A MEMBER MEMBER OPPORTUNITIES
SUPPORT OPERA AMERICA
RESOURCES
To have your company’s photos included in the header rotation, send photos that are at least 1200px wide and 550px tall to Webmaster@operaamerica.org. Please note that submission of photos does not guarantee inclusion.
All OPERA America facilities are handicapped accessible. The National Opera Center features ground-level entry with elevators to the venue. All spaces are wheelchair accessible, and modular seating can be arranged to accommodate wheelchair users for all programs and performances. Handicapped accessible restrooms are available on all floors.
330 Seventh Avenue, New York, NY 10001
Tel: 212.796.8620 • Fax: 212.796.8621
Info@operaamerica.org

Privacy PolicyReturns Policy
2015 Form 990FY16 Audited Financial Statement
© Copyright 1995-2017 OPERA America Inc.

Technical issue with the website? Let us know.