OPERA America Announces Six Recipients of Next Stage Grants Program 2023

By David Salazar

OPERA America has announced the six recipients of its Next Stage Grants program. In sum, the grants total $200,000.

Among the winners are Chicago Opera Theater’s production of “Book of Mountains and Seas” by Huang Ruo; Los Angeles Opera’s “Highway 1, USA” by William Grant Still and Verna Arvey; New Orleans Opera’s “Blue” by Jeanine Tesori and Tazewell Thompson; Opera Parallèle’s “Vinkensport, or The Finch Opera,” by David T. Little and Royce Vavrek; Opera Southwest’s “Before Night Falls” by Jorge Martín and Dolores Koch; and Virginia Opera’s “Sanctuary Road” by Paul Moravec and Mark Campbell.

“OPERA America is committed to building the American opera repertoire, and supporting subsequent productions is a vital aspect of this work,” said Marc A. Scorca, president/CEO of OPERA America, in an official press statement. “Providing support for the revision and production of existing works strengthens the American canon and brings these refreshed works to new audiences.” 

An independent panel that included Patricia K. Beggs, general director emerita of Cincinnati Opera, selected grantees; mezzo-soprano Blythe Gaissert; poet, activist, and educator Deborah D.E.E.P. Mouton; and stage director and designer Thaddeus Strassberger.