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Article Published: 13 Oct 2022

More Works by Women Composers

A glance at the upcoming 2022–2023 season reveals that works by women are continuing to gain a foothold in the repertoire. To name just a few: Rhiannon Giddens and Michael Abels’ Omar bows at LA Opera in October, fresh off its world premiere at Spoleto Festival USA. At the PROTOTYPE Festival in January, Du Yun follows up her Pulitzer Prize-winning Angel’s Bone with In Our Daughter’s Eyes, a chamber opera with a libretto by Michael Joseph McQuilken. And the following month, Seattle Opera offers the world premiere of A Thousand Splendid Suns, Sheila Silver and Stephen Kitsakos’ adaptation of the novel by Khaled Hosseini.

What all these composers have in common is that they are past recipients of Opera Grants for Women Composers (OGWC), an OPERA America grant program that has helped fund more than 100 new operas by women. The program is supported by the Virginia B. Toulmin Foundation.

This summer, seven more operas were added to the roster of OGWC-funded works when OPERA America awarded a new round of Commissioning Grants, providing a total of $100,000 to seven opera companies. These grants offer funding for opera companies to commission new works by women, covering up to 50 percent of a composer’s commissioning fee. (See below for details of the commissioned works.)

With the addition of these Commissioning Grants, OGWC has now awarded more than $1.6 million since its inception in 2013.

Alternating with Commissioning Grants, the OGWC program also awards Discovery Grants directly to women composers, funding developmental activities for works in progress. Applica­tions for the next round of Discovery Grants are currently open, and the intent to apply is due by December 14. For additional information and to apply, visit operaamerica.org/Grants.

OGFC: 2022 Commissioning Grant Recipients

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