Frequently Asked Questions

Check out the frequently asked questions to find more information on our application, scheduling, and audition processes, as well as other general information regarding the Young Artist program.

Applications for the 2017 Young Artist Program are now closed.

If you have inquiries about Chautauqua Opera's Young Artist program outside of the audition window, please email us at


Application Process

Q: How do I apply for the Young Artist Program?
A: Our application is available on Yaptracker. Simply fill out the application and attach all of the required materials.

Please note: Applying for the Young Artist Program does not guarantee that an audition will be granted.

Q: What is the due date to apply?
A: The due date for the 2017 application is October 4, 2016.

Q: What materials am I required to submit?
A: Along with the online application, yaptracker will prompt you to upload the following: an up-to-date resumé and headshot, digital recordings of 2 arias – 1 in English and 1 in another language, and a $35 non-refundable processing fee.

You must also include a copy of documents proving your age (passport, driver's license, or goverment-issued ID with birth-date) and right to work/study in the U.S. (passport or visa).

Q: Am I required to include letters of reference with my application packet?
A: No, we only require the name and contact information of your current voice teacher.

Q: If I don't have an original language English aria recorded, is it acceptable to send a musical theater or English artsong selection?
A: This is done on a case by case basis. It is always better to send an original language English aria, but if not, an aria translated into English would be preferable to either musical theater or artsong.

Q: If I am unavailable for your live audition dates, is it possible to submit an audition via DVD?
A: Generally speaking, we require all auditions to be live.

Scheduling Process

Q: When will I be notified if I have received an audition?
A: We try our best to notify all auditionees by November 1, about a month after the due date. However, it can be a lengthy process as we receive hundreds of applications each year and they are individually sorted and screened.

Q: If I am not granted an audition, when will I be notified?
A: We do notify ALL applicants, even if you are not granted to audition. Typically, you will be notified by November 1 also.

Q: What should I do if I haven't heard either way by the November 1 deadline?
A: Keep an eye on the homepage of our website and our facebook page. As the deadline approaches we will do our best to keep it updated in regards to the progress of notifications. Don't forget to also check your spam and junk email filters just in case. Once ALL applicants have been notified, our homepage will be updated to reflect that information. At that point, if you still haven't received an email, feel free to call or email us.

Q: What if my availability has changed and I have not yet heard about my audition status?
A: Send us an email at with your updated available dates. It does save us time in rescheduling if we have the most specific information possible.

Q: What if my availability has changed AFTER I have confirmed an audition?
A: Depending on where we are in the scheduling process, we may be able to grant your request to change audition dates right away. However, towards the end of scheduling the audition days do get very full and switching audition times becomes less easy. We will often give you the option of being put on a "wait list" for the new day(s) you have requested or keeping your current time. Choosing the wait list does require you to forfeit your current audition time. Should you be put on a wait list, you will most likely still be given an audition but you may not hear back about your new time until we have completed scheduling all those who are granted auditions. We do try our best to accommodate all requests to change dates, but it is not always possible.

Q: Does CHQ allow audition "swaps"?
A: We do not allow singers to swap their audition time with others without going through our office. If you and a friend would like to switch, we ask that BOTH parties send a joint email to us with your current audition slots and the time you would like to change to. We will do our best to accommodate the request.

Audition Process

Q: What dates does CHQ hold auditions?
A: Young Artist auditions are held late November/early December.

Q: Where are auditions held?
A: Auditions will be held in New York City at The National Opera Center, located at 330 Seventh Avenue on the 7th floor. This is on 7th Avenue between 28th and 29th Street. Since the scheduling of almost 500 auditions is a complex process, please do not exchange your assigned audition with other singers. Any change requests must be done through our office.

Q: Does Chautauqua Opera allow "crashers"?
A: No, we do not allow unscheduled singers to audition.

Q: Is there a place for me to warm-up and/or change?
A: Please note: Chautauqua Opera does not provide a warm-up room. However, you may rent a room through The National Opera Center (212-796-8630 or Bookings in advance may be arranged online; bookings the day prior or day-of may be arranged over the phone/in person. The cost per room ranges approximately between $5-$10 for half-hour bookings. Click here for more information, including booking rates, rooms, and directions. There are restrooms on the 7th floor where you may change clothes if required; out of courtesy, please do not vocalize in these rooms.

Q: I have been granted an audition for CHQ but I will also be at the National Opera Center for several other auditions; can I sing for CHQ on a different day or time if I'm already in the building?
A: This will be considered on a case-by-case basis. Every day is heavily booked. Ideally, it is best if you keep your originally scheduled audition date and time.

Q: What materials am I required to bring to my audition?
A: The only thing you are required to bring is an up-to-date repertoire sheet. If your headshot or resume have changed since you submitted your application, feel free to bring a copy of them as well. Chautauqua Opera and the National Opera Center cannot provide printer/copier access, although there is WiFi available at the facility. It is suggested that you bring a few additional arias besides the ones required. Please come prepared.

Q: What if I have travel complications on the day of my audition?
A: If you think you will be unable to make your audition or will be late, please contact our office as soon as possible either by phone, 212-779-3177 or by email, We do check our voicemail every day during auditions and someone will get back to you if necessary.

Q: What if I want to change the repertoire I listed on my application?
A: You can certainly change your selected repertoire, keeping in mind that you are requested to prepare 1 aria in English, 1 in another language and 1 musical theater or operetta selection. In addition, you may bring along any other pieces you are prepared to sing. Please be sure your rep sheet reflects what you have prepared. In certain cases, you may be asked to prepare something specific – in those cases, this information would have been included in your notification email.

Q: Who is on the panel for Young Artist Auditions?
A: All YAP auditions are heard by Steven Osgood, General/Artistic Director of Chautauqua Opera and Carol Rausch, Music Administrator/Chorus Master.

Q: Do I need to bring my own pianist?
A: Chautauqua Opera will provide a pianist for all singers, but you are welcome to bring your own if you prefer.

Q: How many pieces do Mr. Osgood and Ms. Rausch typically hear?
A: You should be prepared to sing all three pieces, both arias and the musical theater/operetta selection. Depending on time constraints, they may only ask to hear one or two. You may choose your first piece and Mr. Osgood and Ms. Rausch will most likely choose the second.

Q: When can I expect to hear whether I have been accepted into the Young Artist Program or not?
A: All auditionees will receive notification via email or phone by mid-December. If you haven't received word by that date, please contact us at

 General Information

Q: What is the age range of Chautauqua Opera Young Artists?
A: The age range for eligibility is 21 to 35. Young Artists must have completed their final year of undergraduate studies by June, 2017.

Q: How many artists are accepted into the program each year?
A: On average, we accept 8 Apprentice Artists and 16 Studio Artists.

Q: What is the difference between an Apprentice Artist and a Studio Artist?

A: Apprentice Artists sing or cover leading, supporting and/or comprimario roles in mainstage productions, perform at outreach performances, perform with the Chautauqua Symphony Orchestra and are hired under an American Guild of Musical Artists (AGMA) Apprenticeship contract.

Studio Artists perform in musical revues, art song recitals, and a program of opera scenes; they may also be assigned comprimario or cover roles in the mainstage productions, and are hired under non-AGMA contracts.

ALL Young Artists appear in the chorus of mainstage productions. Young Artists receive extensive musical coaching from a nationally recognized coaching staff drawn from the finest universities, conservatories and opera houses in the US. All Artists in the program attend classes in movement, combat, makeup, acting and have many opportunities to participate in master classes given by distinguished artists, agents and voice teachers. Notable masterclass teachers in the past have included Constanza Cuccaro (Indiana University), Peter Kazaras (Seattle Opera YA Program), Marlena Malas (Juilliard, Manhattan School of Music), Patricia Misslin (New England Conservatory) and Brian Zeger (Juilliard). Housing, a weekly stipend and a travel allowance are provided for all Young Artists.

Q: What are the dates for the summer season?
A: The Young Artist contracts begin in mid-June and end in early August.


If you have further questions, please feel free to email us at: AUDITIONS@CHAUTOPERA.ORG