Your chance to be an opera star

Signal boosting for the good folks at Against the Grain…

Against the Grain Theatre, Opera Columbus and Banff Centre for the Arts and Creativity seeking members for virtual chorus extravaganza

Singers across the globe encouraged to submit videos to be considered for groundbreaking musical experiment

TORONTO — Against the Grain Theatre, along with co-producers Opera Columbus in Columbus, Ohio, and the Banff Centre for Arts and Creativity in Banff, Alberta, are developing Christoph Willibald Gluck’s most famous work, Orphée et Eurydice (Berlioz version). Premiering in 1762, the opera was in the vanguard, changing the way that the musical form was experienced. This interpretation of the opera—while staying true to the music and feel of the Baroque original—will place the work firmly in the 21st century with new electronic orchestration, baroque burlesque dancers, sopranos singing from silks, and aerial dancers. Most importantly, the co-producers are seeking singers of all types who are interested in becoming part of the production’s virtual chorus.


“We are reaching out globally for interested participants to video-record themselves singing designated parts of Orphée et Eurydice. We will select 100 of these entries and, for the run of this production, these singers will become ‘virtual’ members of our company” said Peggy Kriha Dye, Artistic Director of Opera Columbus. “We are looking to innovate and transform the way that this spectacular opera—which was cutting-edge when it first premiered—is presented and experienced.”

Against the Grain Theatre, Opera Columbus and the Banff Centre for Arts and Creativity are looking for singers to record their voice type to three excerpts from the opera. The submitted videos will be stitched together, then projected onto the set and sound mixed to synch with the live orchestra.

Vocalists, crooners and divas of all varieties can access links for videos on the requirements for videotaping, French diction, and specifics for timing, as well as the sheet music, at The process should take about 30 minutes. After the participants have followed the instructions and completed the video to satisfaction, they can upload their entry onto the website, along with their name, address, and a brief description of their background. Entrants will be informed in due time if their performance made the cut.

Questions can be emailed to The deadline for submission is January 15, 2018.

“As far as we know, this concept hasn’t been applied to opera and we’re excited to see the possibilities that can exist from a visual, technical and ultimately musical standpoint. If you’ve ever wanted to sing in an opera, this could be the easiest way in,” said Joel Ivany, Founder and Artistic Director of Against the Grain Theatre.

Against the Grain Theatre’s production of Orphée⁺ will take place in April, 2018 at the Fleck Dance Theatre. The opera will also be performed in Columbus, Ohio and Banff, Alberta.

Toronto’s Against the Grain Theatre (AtG) has invigorated opera audiences since its first sold-out production to an audience of fifty guests in December of 2010. AtG revitalizes the operatic art form by presenting an eclectic array of musical works in unconventional spaces and innovative ways. Since its first season, AtG has consistently performed to standing room-only crowds, to both critical and public acclaim, and continues to introduce hundreds of new opera-goers to the art form. Founded by an adventurous collective of friends and artists, the company endeavours to be serious in intent and execution, yet fun and irreverent in spirit. Current members include Joel Ivany, Topher Mokrzewski, Jonathan MacArthur, Amanda Hadi, David Eliakis, Jason Hand, Miriam Khalil, and Michaela Dickey.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s