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 NANOWorks Opera 2019 Call for Scores
Summary:Opera competition
Deadline: 01 November 2018
Date Posted: 04 October 2018
Details: We are calling young composers to submit 20-30 minute chamber operas with 1-6 singers and 1-6 instrumentalists. Three composers will be invited to participate in the 2019 Festival in Atlanta, GA, where their operas will be performed and recorded!

Emerging composers at an early stage in their career with no prior major commissions (over $5,000) or major recordings (commercially released with a third party label), originally from or currently based in North America are eligible. There is no age limit.

Submissions will be anonymously reviewed. NANOWorks especially encourages women and people of under-represented minorities to submit their work.

The Work:
• 20-30 minute chamber opera
• scored for 1-6 singers.
• scored for 1-6 performers, from the following pool instruments (one each, i.e. no repeated instruments are accepted):
o 1 Flute (doubling piccolo)
o 1 Oboe (doubling English horn)
o 1 Clarinet (doubling bass clarinet)
o 1 Saxophone
o 1 Bassoon
o Piano
o 1 Percussion (one player)
o 1 Violin
o 1 Viola
o 1 Cello
• Pieces submitted may NOT have been previously performed professionally (outside a university setting) or awarded other prizes.

• Submissions must be anonymous. Score and recording must show the title of the work only. Should any part of the composer’s name be legible on the score, recording or linked URLs, the entry will be disqualified.
• You may submit more than one opera, but each work requires a separate application.

To submit your composition, please prepare the following APPLICATION:
• A PDF of the piano/vocal score
(Please use “YourPiece_Score” as file name)
• A MIDI or MP3 file (if possible) of your composition
(Please use “YourPiece_Audio” as file name)
• An info sheet listing all the roles and their voice types, and the instrumentation.
(Please use “YourPiece_Info” as file name)
• A PDF of your CV/resume
(Please use “LastName_CV” as file name)
• A PDF of your 250-word Bio
(Please use “LastName_Bio” as file name)

DEADLINE for Submission: November 1st, 2018

Application Fee: $30 per submission
Festival participation fee: $250
Please pay via PAYPAL

[Fees go toward paying our awesome singers, instrumentalists, and conductors, as well as provide necessary staging elements and technical support during the festival. All these contribute to creating the best new operas possible and giving the composer community valuable resources and opportunities to launch their careers.]

The selection results will be announced on December 1, 2018. Three composers will be invited to participate in the NANOWorks Festival in May 2019, where their operatic works will receive coaching, public performances, and recordings.

Travel and lodging are the participants' responsibility. NANOWorks can assist in finding accommodation with donors, but cannot guarantee a place.

Questions? Contact us at


 Sarasota Opera Request For Submission of New Youth Works
Summary:Opera for Young People
Deadline: None
Date Posted: 15 April 2015
Details: Sarasota Opera is pleased to invite composers to submit works for a new opera for possible production in November 2017 by Sarasota Youth Opera, one of the most comprehensive programs in the United States.

This invitation is open to any living composer or librettist, of any age, who is a United States citizen.

The submission deadline is Wednesday, September 30, 2015, at 5 pm.

Click HERE to download submission form

About Sarasota Youth Opera:

Since 1984, Sarasota Youth Opera (SYO) has given young people age 8 to 18 an opportunity to experience the magic of opera through participation in after-school choruses, Sarasota Opera mainstage productions, summer workshops, and the Youth Opera's own full-scale productions.

Regarded as a leader in the commissioning and producing of works for young voices, SYO is the only program in the United States committed to presenting annual, full-scale opera productions for young voices with professional musicians, direction, and costume and scenic design.

Since 1986, five commissioned world premieres and over 20 additional youth opera productions have been presented. Past commissions include:

2012 Little Nemo in Slumberland (music by Daron Hagen, libretto by J.D. McClatchy)
2004 The Language of Birds (music by John Kennedy, libretto by Peter Krask)
1998 Eye of Ra (music by Tom Suta, libretto by Diana Colson)
1993 Her Lightness (music and libretto by Polly Pen)
1989 Deadline

Our most recent commission, Little Nemo in Slumberland, featured over 106 young people and used a ground-breaking projection technology called SCRIBE (Self-Contained Rapidly Integratable Background Environment) to bring Winsor McCay’s comic strips to life. Since it’s 2012 premiere, Little Nemo in Slumberland has been performed by The University of Kentucky Opera Theatre, Tulsa Youth Opera, La Sierra University, and Pittsburgh High School for the Performing Arts.

In November 2014, SYO presented Dean Burry’s The Hobbit. Based on the writings of J.R.R. Tolkien, this classic adventure was brought to life with a cast of over 95 young people and 12 professional musicians on the stage of the Sarasota Opera House.

Both Little Nemo in Slumberland and The Hobbit performed to sold-out audiences.


-English Libretto
-60 minutes of playing time. One Intermission optional.
-10 to 15 solo youth roles in treble voice
-Optional 1 to 3 adult players. Adults may portray more than one character.
-SSAB youth chorus ensemble that is featured predominately throughout the work
-Chamber orchestration of no more than 13 instruments, may include piano
-Roles with specific physical requirements are best avoided
-Entirely sung (minimal spoken narration or dialog optional)


"Sarasota Opera is dedicated to performing classic works of opera in a manner that is true to the composer’s intentions. In the years that we have been doing productions with our Youth Opera, I have found there are few works of substantial musical value for young people to perform. In our desire to increase the repertoire we are looking for music that is rooted in the classic music style, reflecting how that music is written today without the influence of other genres such musical theater, jazz or other popular idioms.

"The Youth Opera was begun as a way to get young people interested in art music. The works we are looking for should help achieve that goal and be musically sophisticated enough to appeal to adults while still accessible to children."

--Maestro Victor DeRenzi
Artistic Director, Sarasota Opera


-Copyright clearance must obtained prior to entry
-Submissions must be unpublished works not currently accepted by a publisher for publication or rental
-Works may have been workshopped, but should not have received a premiere performance
-Works should show an awareness of the practical realities of rehearsal and performance
-Sarasota Opera will hold the rights for the premiere performances and one subsequent production


-Piano-Vocal format
-Minimum 30% complete (approximately 20 minutes of music)
-Submission must include at least one (1) chorus ensemble number
-Each composer may submit up to three (3) works
-Manuscripts should be legible if hand-written

Submission should include:
-Submission Form
-Letter of Introduction
-PDF of PV and Libretto
-Each score must have a title page containing characters, voice types, and brief synopsis for proposed work
-If submitted in hard copy, please include a self-addressed stamped envelope for return
-Inclusion of a recording of work-shopped scenes, full opera, or midi recording is optional

If no entry is deemed appropriate, the panel reserves the right to not make a selection and no fee will be awarded.

Submissions May Be Sent To:

Sarasota Opera
New Youth Works Submission
61 N. Pineapple Avenue
Sarasota, FL 34236

Materials may be submitted electronically via this Dropbox link: Submit Materials.

If submitting electronically, please include “Composer Last Name, Composer First Name” at the beginning of each file name (eg: "Doe_Jane_Opera_Title").


September 2015 Submission Deadline
December 2015 Finalists Announced
May 2016 Finalists Submitted Completed PV
August 2016 Final Selection(s) Announced – Winner(s) Complete Orchestration
November 2017 Premiere Production


Composer $15,000
Librettist $10,000
Composer/Librettist (wrote both) $20,000