About the Program


Each year, UNT Opera presents 3 full productions (one each semester), accompanied by the UNT Orchestra, in the intimate, flexible, and singer-friendly Lyric Theater in the Murchison Performing Arts Center. Productions are carefully selected with the goal of exposing our students to a wide variety of literature in a broad range of musical and theatrical styles. We also work hard to provide solo and ensemble opportunities that will be the best possible fit, vocally and dramatically, for each student in the program. Preparation for every production emphasizes process as well as product; we aim to achieve the highest standards of performing excellence through detailed, consistent, and individualized training in movement, language, style, and character, with the ultimate goal of developing free, expressive, integrated, “full-spectrum” performers. Productions are usually double-cast. Recent productions include:

Virgil Thompson's The Mother of Us All (2016)

Mozart's Don Giovanni (2015)

Offenbach's Les contes d'Hoffmann (2015)

Lehár's The Merry Widow (2014)

Rossini's Il barbiere di Siviglia (2014)

Puccini's Gianni Schicchi and Leoncavallo's I Pagliacci (2014)

Sondheim's Sweeney Todd (2014)

Massenet's Cendrillon (2013)

Rousseau’s Le devin du village (2013)

Gilbert & Sullivan’s The Pirates of Penzance (2013)

Gounod's Romeo et Juliette (2012)

Weill’s The Threepenny Opera (2012)

Donizetti’s Lucia di Lammermoor (sung in Italian) (2012)

Special projects

Typically, we offer one additional production per year, using smaller orchestral forces or featuring collaborations with other departments. Examples of recent special projects include:

Baroque operas: new edition premiere of Monteverdi’s L’incoronazione di Poppea (2016), Cavalli’s L’Egisto (2007), and Rousseau's Le Devin du Village (2013) in conjunction with UNT’s award-winning early music program

Chamber operas, using reduced or chamber orchestration: productions of Ravel’s L’enfant et les sortileges (2002); Mozart’s Le nozze di Figaro (2003); Britten’s Albert Herring (2005); Verdi’s La traviata (Concert for Hope—2009); and Britten’s The Turn of the Screw (planned for 2010)

Workshop productions, using piano accompaniment: Humperdinck’s Hansel and Gretel (2002 and 2005); and Puccini’s Suor Angelica (2008)

Musicals, in collaboration with the UNT Department of Dance and Theatre: Rodgers and Hammerstein’s Carousel (2002) and Sondheim’s A Little Night Music (2004)

The world premiere of Hans Schaeuble’s Dorian Gray (2004) in collaboration with the department of Theory, History and Ethnomusicology in the College of Music

Scenes programs 

Under the title Opera without Elephants, we present undergraduate and graduate students in varied programs of scenes from the broad operatic repertory. The graduate Opera Directing class and the Singing/Acting class also collaborate on scenes programs. Other performances include: Great Britten concert (2003)

Exchange program

Our ongoing collaboration with the Conservatorio A. Steffani in Castelfranco Veneto, Italy has resulted in the following productions at the Teatro Accademico: Rossini’s La cambiale di matrimonio (1999); Verdi’s La traviata (2001) and Mozart’s Così fan tutte (2006). Additionally, we performed Così at the Teatro Goldoni in Venice as part of that city’s Festivale Galuppi. The exchange has also brought Italian coaches and conductors to work with our students in Denton.

Outreach performances

Numerous opportunities to perform for local audiences throughout the Dallas-Ft. Worth Metroplex. Recent performances for:
Dallas Public Library; Dallas Arboretum; Puccini Society of Dallas; Denton Women’s Club; Greater Denton Arts Council; Robson Ranch