The Deutsche Bank Foundation continues this successful initiative. Since 2001, it has annually offered conductors, dramaturges, stage-directors, culture managers, stage- and costume designers and composers the opportunity to deepen their knowledge of artistic expression and opera management as well gain new experience and make new contacts. Dealing with current issues facing opera is a central focus of the Academy’s program. With its unique concept, Academy Opera today has firmly established itself as a promoter of opera and filled a gap in supporting talented, young artists in the opera world.
Academy Opera today – a multi-discipline network
Academy Opera today is unique in Germany’s opera scene. Nowhere else can the “team behind the stage” learn more about the opera world and benefit from a dynamic network.
The idea of establishing an academy stemmed from a student initiative in the mid-1990s at the Humboldt University in Berlin. A number of young, diverse and contemporary music-inspired students showed interest in the work of international composers and discussed various contemporary music and opera concepts. The idea of a continuing training program – Academy Opera Today – was born in 1998 in collaboration with Gérard Mortier who was the director of the Salzburger Festspiele at the time. Nearly 20 young opera lovers discussed the current productions of the Salzburger Festspiele together with the performing artists.
Deutsche Bank Foundation establishes two year scholarship program
Core of the Academy program: the workshops
Four to six times per year, fellows attend outstanding and innovative productions in opera houses in German-speaking Europe as well as at festivals in the European area. The workshops offer the young artists the opportunity to discuss and share views with well-known personalities from all areas of the opera world. The Academy’s fellows gain insight into the artistic work and management of their opera houses.
Opportunities for experimental opera projects
Academy Opera Today gives young talents a platform for animated debate and to exchange views, but it goes further: in the program, participants are given the opportunity to practise their craft together with other like-minded people. An essential component is support for the outgoing class’s own production. For that, the Deutsche Bank Foundation annually commissions a composition. The Academy also supports cooperation between fellows and external partners.
Active alumni network
In 2010, the Academy celebrated its tenth anniversary. Since 2001, it has admitted and trained nearly 200 fellows. An alumni network with meanwhile more than 160 members has also been established. Former fellows work throughout Germany as well as in Austria and Switzerland. Many of them have senior positions in international opera houses. The networking idea has been gaining momentum from year to year. Numerous alumni and current fellows work on productions in renowned opera houses or in innovative independent projects. Opportunities abound to establish fruitful connections that enliven today’s opera scene.
Academy alumni are also engaged in the bank’s Corporate Responsibility projects, such as opernSTART in which they introduce scholarship recipients of the START program to opera in workshops.
LoveAffairs – Love scenarios
The Premiere of LoveAffairs took place at Tischlerei, Deutsche Oper Berlin on June 20, 2014 .
Crafted and designed by the 2012-2014 fellows, LoveAffairs deals with the topic love: as a vehicle, as an emotion, as centuries-old theme of the opera.