The Opera Australia Regional Student Scholarship

By Katrina Wiseman, Year 12 student in 2016

Each year Opera Australia offers four students from around Australia a Regional Student Scholarship ? an opportunity to go to Sydney and spend time working with professionals and gaining an understanding of what is involved in being a professional opera singer.

There is an extensive application process, including a written application, audition, being shortlisted by the Opera Australia Chorus Master, and then the final four students are chosen by Artistic Director, Lyndon Terracini.

In November last year it was announced that I would receive one of the four scholarship places.

In January, I went to Sydney to work with Opera Australia Director Roger Press, and professionals Taryn Fiebig and Samuel Dundas. Working in all areas from singing to acting, language and musicianship, the scholarship program was not only an incredible experience, but also improved my performance skills immensely, which were put on show for Opera Australia patrons and professionals in our final recital.

While in Sydney, scholarship winners also saw productions of La Boheme (with Taryn Fiebig as Musetta), Cavalleria Rusticana / Pagliacci (with Samuel Dundas as Silvio), and the opening night production of King Roger, the first Polish opera to be performed in Australia. What little time remained between all of this was spent observing rehearsals, tours of backstage, make up, costume and wig departments and observing performances from the orchestra pit, and perched up above the stage. Really there was nothing we didn't do!

I have received singing lessons through Radford with Alira Prideaux for the past four years, and have taken part in many musicals, choirs and eisteddfods in that time. I plan to continue with my music as I study at ANU, and return for a career in opera once my voice has fully matured.

For more details about the scholarship visit https://opera.org.au/on-tour/regional-tour/student-scholarship.

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