Kent State Opera continues to grow and expand, offering scene programs and fully staged productions with orchestra.  

Kent State Opera is dedicated to developing and nurturing young artists in the craft of opera performance by recognizing their individual strengths as they build the skills necessary to achieve their creative, academic and career goals.

About the Program

Over the past decade, the Kent State Opera has continued to grow and diversify, presenting scene programs and fully staged productions with the Kent State University Orchestra to great acclaim each academic year. Students in the program experience a rich curriculum of vocal coaching, acting lessons, and production best practices. 

Learn about of Voice Division here

Faculty

Marla Berg, Director, Associate Professor: Regarded as a versatile performer of opera and musical theatre, Marla has sung with some of the countries premier opera companies, including Glimmerglass Opera, Fort Worth Opera, Kansas City Opera and more. Her musical theatre credits include appearances at Porthouse Theatre, Dobama Theatre (Cleveland), and more. Since 2012, she has directed the Kent State Opera program, facilitating the expansion of its productions and robust training with Jay White. Read more here

Jay White, Music Director, Professor: With a career spanning 35 years, Jay has realized an extensive performing career as a chorister and alto soloist singing every conceivable style of music. Now the Artistic Director of Quire Cleveland, he also spent eight years with the acclaimed choral ensemble Chanticleer, with whom he traveled to over 40 states and 15 countries. In addition to his full studio of student and classes, he has served alongside Marla Berg as the Music Director of Kent State Opera since 2014. Read more here.

Auditions

Casting is open to all Kent State University undergraduate and graduate students through audition. Typically, auditions are held during the first full week of classes each semester. Auditionees can expect two sing two selections in different languages (arias preferred but art song accepted). 

Questions?

Contact:
Marla Berg
Opera Director and Associate Professor of Voice
mberg4 [at] kent.edu | 330-672-9238

Productions

2017-2018

Spring

"Die Fledermaus" | Johann Strauss II
Performed with Kent State University Orchestra
Ludwig Recital Hall | Center for the Performing Arts

Fall

Opera Scenes | “The Wonderful, Wacky World of Opera”
Wright-Curtis Theatre | Center for the Performing Arts

2016-17

Spring

"A Novel Idea! Stories of Operatic Proportions"
- "Gisela In Her Bathtub" by Neil Weisensel, Orchestration World Premiere
- "The Harpies" by Marc Blitzstein
- "The Doctor Miracle" by Georges Bizet
Performed with the Kent State University Orchestra
Ludwig Recital Hall | Center for the Performing Arts

Fall

Scenes from "The Magic Flute" | Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
Murphy Auditorium | Kent State University Museum

2015-16

Spring

"Sweethearts" | Victor Herbert
Semi-staged concert performance with the Kent State University Orchestra
University Auditorium | Cartwright Hall

Fall

Opera Scenes | “Trying Trios!!!”
Wright-Curtis Theatre | Center for the Performing Arts

2014-15

Spring

"Iolanthe" | Gilbert and Sullivan
Ludwig Recital Hall | Center for the Performing Arts

Fall

Opera Scenes | “Singing in Circles,”
Wright-Curtis Theatre | Center for the Performing Arts

2013-14

Spring

"A Musical Evening at the Choufleuris’" | Jaques Offenbach
Ludwig Recital Hall | Center for the Performing Arts
Northeast Ohio Tour

Fall

Opera Scenes | “Singing Outside the Box”
Wright-Curtis Theatre | Center for the Performing Arts

2012-13

Spring

“Oh...The Games We Play”
- "The Impresario" by W.A. Mozart
- "A Hand of Bridge" by Samuel Barber
- "Gianni Schicchi" by Giacomo Puccini
Performed with the Kent State University Orchestra
Ludwig Recital Hall | Center for the Performing Arts

Fall

Opera Scenes | “Lovesick Maidens, their Men and More, Much More”
Kent State University