Artist Diploma in Opera

Since its founding in 1867, New England Conservatory has launched generations of successful musical careers. Our Artist Diploma in Opera program exemplifies this extraordinary tradition.

Offering a small number of especially gifted performers a remarkable combination of mentorship, study, performance opportunity, and artist retreat, the NEC Artist Diploma in Opera takes full advantage of the educational and musical resources that NEC—and the NEC community—are so uniquely able to provide.

The program typically admits one or two singers each year, following a final live audition before NEC's Artist Diploma in Opera Committee. The small size of the program allows the Opera Department to invest significant time and personal attention in the training, development, and nurturing of each Artist Diploma singer, according to each singer's unique talents and needs.

  • Full tuition scholarship plus $10,000 annual stipend
  • Individualized, two-year programs
  • Exceptional NEC faculty and visiting guest artists
  • At least one principal role with orchestra in a mainstage NEC production per year. There are at least two fully staged NEC opera productions each academic year.
  • Showcase performances in historic Jordan Hall
  • Preferential access to the acclaimed Gerdine Young Artists Program of Opera Theatre of St. Louis, with subsidized travel and housing
  • Given the highly selective nature of the program, Artist Diploma candidates are often NEC’s first-call vocalists for additional performances of opera scenes, outreach programs, and special events.

We invite you to seize this moment: deepen and challenge your artistry, broaden your perspective, and ignite your musical and professional growth.

NEC’s dedication to uncovering the individual artist in every singer is legendary. In close collaboration with faculty, mentors, and coaches, each Artist Diploma candidate embarks upon a program that is carefully tailored to meet his or her unique needs and aspirations. As the classic skills of the vocal artist are refined—nuances of interpretation, expression, style, role preparation, acting, movement, languages, diction, and repertoire—the special contribution of each artist is revealed.

Application Instructions

Audition Requirements

Participants in the Program

In fall 2012, three current or recent participants in NEC's Artist Diploma program in opera headlined a production of Gluck's Orfeo ed Euridice in NEC's Jordan Hall. The video playlist on this page shows highlights from their performances: soprano Soyoung Park '12 M.M., '14 A.D. as Cupid, soprano Hae Ji Chang '12 A.D. in the role of Euridice, and mezzo-soprano Jaime Korkos '11 G.D., '13 A.D. in the title role of Orfeo.

Learn more about these singers here.

Artist Diploma in Opera Committee

Jane Eaglen, Voice faculty
Karen Holvik, Chair of Voice Department
Stephen Lord, Opera Studies Artistic Advisor
Joshua Major, Chair of Opera Studies
Tom Novak, Provost and Dean of College
Bradley Williams, Assistant Chair of Voice Department
Tony Woodcock, President