Young singers from around the world can now submit applications to participate in the NEUE STIMMEN International Singing Competition. Applications will be accepted until March 15, 2019. The jury for the preliminary auditions has been expanded to include Sophie Joyce and Alexander Neef.
Since it was established in 1987, the NEUE STIMMEN International Singing Competition has become one of the opera world’s major competitions worldwide. Over 1,400 young singing talents apply to compete and thus gain the opportunity to sing for experienced jury members at one of the 25 preliminary auditions held in Europe, North America, Asia and South Africa. Together with local experts, the preliminary-round jury will decide which 40 to 45 contestants are invited to Gütersloh to participate in the final round this autumn. The preliminary-round jury, previously led by Brian Dickie and Evamaria Wieser, is being supported for the first time by Sophie Joyce, director of the Lindemann Young Artist Development Program at the Metropolitan Opera in New York, and Alexander Neef, general director of the Canadian Opera Company.
We have thus succeeded in welcoming two additional, internationally active experts from the world of opera to its program, further strengthening its efforts to assist young talents. "As the director of the Lindemann Young Artist Development Program at the Metropolitan Opera, I am all too aware that the future of opera depends not just upon finding the next generation of gifted young singers, but upon nurturing their talents and providing them with the opportunity to be heard, and recognized, by a wider audience. It is therefore a privilege and an honor to join the jury of NEUE STIMMEN," said Sophie Joyce, commenting on her appointment. Fellow jury member Alexander Neef added," As the general director of a major North American opera company, NEUE STIMMEN has always been a major source of discovery for the most promising young singers from all over the world for me. For young singers from North America, the competition presents a unique opportunity to showcase their talents in the heart of Europe in front of some of the most discerning artistic directors and casting consultants. Getting access to the largest market of operatic activity is absolutely crucial to develop a successful career."
Discovering talent on site: One of the competition's strengths
The preliminary auditions will take place from April 24 to September 8, 2019, in 25 cities around the globe, including for the first time Bologna, Dublin, Frankfurt, Philadelphia, Pretoria and Santa Fe. As in previous years, singers can also audition in Amsterdam, Beijing, Berlin, Cape Town, Chicago, Gothenburg, Izmir, Kiev, London, Madrid, Moscow, Munich, New York, Riga, Shanghai, Toronto, Vienna, Warsaw and Yokosuka.
"NEUE STIMMEN is more than just a singing competition – it builds bridges of understanding across cultures and languages and creates friendships. That, for me, is the invaluable contribution music and culture make in such uncertain times," said Liz Mohn, president of NEUE STIMMEN.
The 40 to 45 best participants from the preliminary round will be invited to compete in the final round in Gütersloh from October 19 to 27, 2019. While there, they will have the chance to take part in the semifinals and finals, accompanied by an orchestra as they perform for the jury and music-world experts.
High-profile recognition and international network
As part of the competition, we will award prizes totaling more than €60,000. Just as important for the up-and-coming singers are the contacts at NEUE STIMMEN to opera house managers, festival directors and agents, as well as the ongoing career guidance and support provided by international partners, experts and the NEUE STIMMEN team.
After the competition ends, NEUE STIMMEN often supports and assists participants for years. Selected singers are invited to attend master classes, workshops and career-building seminars, and to perform in NEUE STIMMEN concerts in Germany and abroad. In addition, a scholarship is awarded for the International Opera Studio at Staatsoper Unter den Linden Berlin. Thanks to longstanding partnerships, including with the Bregenz Festival, numerous former contestants receive the opportunity to demonstrate their talents on established stages and to learn more about the challenges professional opera singers face.
Singers of all nationalities can register from January 15 up to and including March 15, 2019, on the NEUE STIMMEN website. The requirements contestants must fulfill and the repertoire of arias they must know are described there in detail. Almost 1,500 young singers from more than 70 nations applied to take part in the 2017 competition. First prizes were awarded to Svetlina Stoyanova (Bulgaria) and Cho ChanHee (South Korea).
More about NEUE STIMMEN
The NEUE STIMMEN International Singing Competition was initiated in 1987 by Liz Mohn, president of NEUE STIMMEN and vice-chairwoman of the Bertelsmann Stiftung Executive Board. It is considered one of the most important international events for young opera talents. The competition allows up-and-coming singers to make contact with jury members, opera house managers and agents. The NEUE STIMMEN competition has already helped many young artists launch major careers, including Vesselina Kasarova, René Pape, Nathalie Stutzmann, Roman Trekel, Michael Volle, Hanno Müller-Brachmann, Anna Samuil, Maxim Mironov, Franco Fagioli, Marina Rebeka, Christiane Karg, Olga Bezsmertna and Nadine Sierra.