OPERA America Awards $100,000 in Discovery Grants to Eight Women Composers
Generously supported by the Virginia B. Toulmin Foundation
OPERA America is pleased to announce the eight composers selected as recipients of the 2023 Discovery Grants from its Opera Grants for Women Composers program, made possible with the generosity of the Virginia B. Toulmin Foundation. The program promotes the work of women composers in opera and raises their visibility across the field. Grants totaling $100,000 will support the development of new opera and music-theater works by these exceptional composers.
The 2023 recipients are:
- Juhi Bansal, for Star Singer
- Annie Gosfield, for Peggy and Jackson
- Jennifer Jolley, for Spacewalk
- Dana Kaufman, for Sally Ride
- Tamar Muskal, for Nadia
- Shara Nova, for The Subnivean Zone: Under the Snow
- Bernadette Speach, for The Little Rock Nine
- Jennifer Williams, for Dis/Inform
See below for additional information about the composers and their works.
In addition to cash awards, OPERA America provides travel support for all Discovery Grant recipients to attend its annual Opera Conference and New Works Forum, enabling them to develop relationships with potential creative partners and producers. Grant recipients also receive mentorship on the artistic and business aspects of new work development.
Grantees were selected from an applicant pool of 57 highly qualified composers by a panel of industry leaders consisting of Pamela Baskin-Watson, composer/librettist and 2022 IDEA Opera Grant recipient; Jose Maria Condemi, stage director; Kip Cranna, dramaturg emeritus, San Francisco Opera; Laura Jobin-Acosta, composer and 2021 IDEA Opera Resident Artist; Kristin Kuster, composer and 2014 Discovery Grant recipient; and Darren K. Woods, artistic director, Seagle Festival.
“Discovery Grants are part of a concerted effort to increase gender parity in the opera field,” stated Marc A. Scorca, president/CEO of OPERA America. “We are proud to recognize these eight composers who will enrich the field with their unique creative voices. We are grateful to continue this work with the generous support of the Virginia B. Toulmin Foundation.”
OPERA America is committed to increasing gender parity across the field through multiple initiatives. These include Opera Grants for Women Composers, Opera Grants for Women Stage Directors and Conductors, Mentorship Program for Women Administrators, and Women’s Opera Network.
OPERA America’s strategic philanthropy supports field-wide innovation with an emphasis on new work development, co-production, audience building, and increased civic practice. Since the inception of its granting programs, OPERA America has awarded over $20 million to the opera field to support the work of opera creators, administrators, and companies.
More information about OPERA America’s grant programs is available at operaamerica.org/Grants.