Opera America Announces Major Grants To Support Operas by Houston Grand Opera, Dallas Opera Lyric Opera of Chicago & Others

By David Salazar

Opera America has announced that it has awarded $220,000 to develop new American operas with seven different companies.

The recipients of the grants include The American Opera Project and Seagle Music Colony, Beth Morrison Projects, Houston Grand Opera, Lyric Opera of Chicago, San Diego Opera, and The Dallas Opera.

The American Opera Project and Seagle Music Colony are working together on “Legendary” by composer Joseph Rubinstein and librettist Jason Kim. Beth Morrison Projects is focusing on “Adoration by composer Mary Kouyoumdjian and librettist Royce Vavrek, while Houston Grand Opera’s new opera will be “Intelligence” by Jake Heggie and Gene Scheer.

The Lyric Opera of Chicago’s project includes three one-act operas curated by Renée Fleming that includes music by Caroline Shaw, David Luther Adams, and Daniel Bernard.

San Diego Opera’s project is “El ultimo sueño de Frida y Diego” by composer Gabriel Lena and librettist Nilo Cruz. Finally, The Dallas Opera’s Project is Joby Talbot and Gene Scheer’s “The Diving Bell and the Butterfly.”

“Fostering the creation of new works is a cornerstone of OPERA America’s mission, and we’ve seen a remarkable flowering of new American opera over recent decades,” stated Marc A. Scorca, resident/CEO of OPERA America in a press release. “Since the year 2000, we’ve seen the premiere of over 700 North American operas. American works account for 18 percent of all productions in the 2019–2020 season.”