The University of Alabama School of Music and the UA Opera Theatre
is pleased to host the sixth annual
May 20-28, 2015
An intensive opera training and young artists program and
performance opportunity for singers, pianists, and directors.
Paul Houghtaling, Artistic Director
The 2014 Druid City Opera Workshop and Young Artists Training Program was held May 21-29, 2014 with participants from Texas, Arkansas, Mississippi, Minnesota, Nevada, Ohio, Nebraska, and Alabama.
The 2014 program also included two collaborative pianist interns, as well as our own stage directing intern.
21 young artists were selected from over 100 applicants. Thank you to all who applied to Druid City 2014, and we hope you’ll consider our program again next year.
2014 Druid City Opera Workshop
Click Here for a video featuring 2013 Druid City artists.
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See our Facebook page for photos of recent Druid City seasons
and for additional information and periodic updates.
Click Here to see the 2014 Druid City SCHEDULE of classes and events,
including a list of participating young artists.
Click Here to see the 2014 PROGRAM for the Final Druid City performance,
May 29, 2014.
Click Here to see the 2013 Druid City SCHEDULE of classes and events.
Click Here see the 2013 PROGRAM for the Final Druid City performance,
May 30, 2013, including a list of participating young artists.
Click here for DRUID CITY PHOTOS
Opportunities and Experience available for singers, apprentice coach/pianists and apprentice stage directors.
- Performances (with piano) with repertoire selected from:
- scenes from opera, operetta, and musical theater
- one-act operas
- arias and songs
- Daily coachings and rehearsals of assigned repertoire
(carefully selected based on voice type and
- Daily classes including:
- improvisation and acting for singers
- movement (dance, mime)
- stage combat
- audition techniques
- Special sessions and classes which may include:
- body mapping and performance anxiety clinics
- yoga for singers
- diction for singers
Apprentice Pianists and Stage Directors: The same application procedures should be followed (see below). Aspiring coach-pianists and stage directors should submit a detailed resume which includes the names and contact information of three references along with recordings (MP3 links, YouTube videos, etc) via email.
Minimum Age for Participants: 19 years of age; no maximum age restriction
2015 Tuition: $650 (limited financial assistance available)
Housing: Campus housing (single rooms) is available for $350 for the week (9 nights)**. This price includes linens and lunch on 6 days of the program. Housing is a 5-minute walk to the music building, with many restaurants and food options nearby. (Note: These are current costs. Housing expenses may be subject to change closer to the spring 2015 deadline.)
TOTAL COST OF PROGRAM – $1,000
2015 Druid City Faculty, Guest Artists, and Clinicians:
Paul Houghtaling, Artistic Director
2015 faculty will be announced in winter, 2014/2015. Check back with us often for updates.
2014 Druid City Faculty, Guest Artists, and Clinicians:
Paul Houghtaling, Artistic Director
Please send an email to the address below with the following attachments: 1) resume, 2) headshot (singers), and 3) links to recordings (MP3 files, YouTube videos, etc.) of two selections, at least one of which should be an opera aria in any language. Resumes should include the names and contact information of three references.
Application Deadline: March 15, 2015.
The Druid City Opera Workshop
c/o University of Alabama Opera Theatre
The School of Music
PO Box 870366
Tuscaloosa, AL 35487-0366
Feel free to call Dr. Houghtaling for further information on the program at (646) 345-5584.
Comments from 2014 Druid City participants:
“I want to sincerely thank you for a wonderful experience at Druid City. I came away from the trip as a much better musician, actress, and person. Your kindness will forever be with me. I loved working with students of all levels of experience and getting to know them on a personal level as well. This program helped me understand what it means to be a well-rounded singer-actor and what it takes to succeed in this business. Druid City gave the confidence, focused mindset, and encouragement I needed to call myself an ‘Opera Singer’.” (Grace Manley, soprano – University of Nebraska Omaha)
“Druid City truly was a life changing experience! I learned more than I ever thought possible in just a week’s time and I am amazed at my growth as a musician. I made friendships that I will cherish for a lifetime and through those people I have a renewed sense of purpose in my career choice. Thank you so much for the opportunity to change my life!” (Cori Beasley, soprano – Arkansas State University, Jonesboro)
“Druid City was truly a positive and life-changing experience. Under the direction of Paul Houghtaling I learned three things: be prepared, perform with abandon, and love the people around you and the art itself. I never thought I would perform at this caliber over a year ago.” (Faustino “NJ” Solis, tenor – University of Nevada Las Vegas)
“After going to The Druid City Opera Workshop 3 different times, I have to say this year was by far the best one yet. It was so refreshing to return to a program I hold close to my heart and meet new, amazing people, learn so much more, and sing better than I ever have. Thank you to everyone who was a part of this special week, especially Paul Houghtaling who has put so much into giving us a life changing experience. You continue to change my life and make me a better person and performer. As sad as I was to leave today, the memories we all made together will be a part of me forever. Thank you for sharing your hearts, talents, and knowledge with me. I love you all more than you’ll ever know! “This is who we are, this is what we do.” (Courtney Stancil, soprano – Southern Methodist University)
“The Druid City Opera Workshop has by far been the BEST decision I’ve ever made. Being selected to be a part of this great program was a huge blessing to Me! I’ve met some AMAZINGLY, INCREDIBLE young artists, coaches, and directors during this experience. As well as, gained knowledge and insight on my dream career and what it takes to be successful in this field. Each member of the Druid City company has a special place in my heart, and I am honored to call you all my friends! (De’Von Smith, baritone – Alcorn State University, Mississippi)
Comments from 2013 Druid City participants:
“I can honestly say, this has been one of the best experiences of my life!!!! Thank you Dr. Houghtaling and everyone at Druid City Opera for everything!! This experience will have a special place in my heart forever.” (Nick Szoeke, baritone – Sam Houston State University, Texas)
“Druid City Opera Workshop is life-changing. Not only will you be able to own your craft like you never thought possible, but it will give you the tools to become a triple threat.” (Cheyna Alexander, soprano – University of Nevada Las Vegas)
“I never imagined how much Druid City would change me as a person and, more importantly, as a singer. It gave me back my confidence and inspired me to continue pursuing my career. It reminded me why I love singing so much.” (Cristian Torres, tenor – University of Texas, Brownsville)
“Doing Druid City last week was one of the best experiences of my life, and I am so grateful that it happened.” (Cornelia Lotito, soprano – Montclair State University, New Jersey)
“Druid City Opera Workshop is the place to be. I learned so much, not only about my art but about who I am. I’ve never been more confident about my craft and I feel like I’ve been revived.” (Seth J. Stemple, tenor – Glenville State College, West Virginia)
“Compared to other programs I’ve done, Druid City is unparalleled in terms of the amount of individual attention each participant receives. The scenes were carefully chosen to highlight every singer, and the abundance of master classes and coachings provided fantastic opportunities to work with enthusiastic, knowledgeable professionals. The seminars on the business aspects of an operatic career were a wonderful supplement.” (Rachel Yap, soprano – North Park University, Chicago)
“Thank you so much for such an amazing experience. I learned so much, not only about my voice, but also new skills which will make me a better artist.” (Rachel Hutzenbiler, soprano – East Carolina University)
“Thanks for allowing me to be part of such a wonderful group! Druid City is such a well-rounded program, with one on one advice from professionals in opera. I feel so much more confident about applying to other summer programs and graduate schools.” (Briana Fae Raif, mezzo-soprano – University of Mississippi)
“Thank you so much for the opportunity. Druid City was truly one of the best experiences of my life. I felt like I grew more as a professional and artist over the course of the week. This program is worth every penny, one of the most complete young artist programs out there.” (Colin Alexander, baritone – Birmingham-Southern College)
Comments from 2012 Druid City participants:
“Thank you for an amazing program. Those eight days have made me feel extremely confident in my abilities as a performer and on what I have to offer Young Artist Programs. This program was exactly what I needed. I can’t tell you enough how wonderful it was and how much I’ve appreciated all that you’ve done for it.” (Elayne Juten, mezzo-soprano – University of Iowa)
“I learned so many different things in this week I will take them with me for my whole career. This was such a fantastic program with wonderful people.” (Brittany Anderson, soprano – University of Northern Illinois)
“Thanks for such a great experience. I learned so so much, not only about everything involved with opera but about myself as well.” (Aimee Allen, soprano – Simpson College, Iowa)
“This program was just fantastic. The caliber of the faculty was ASTOUNDING. Each teacher contributed so much to my growth throughout the week. Druid City was CLEARLY the right decision. Your program has re-kindled my love for performing and helped me to realize that I can continue to grow as a singer/actress. I have never met anyone so devoted to helping young singers succeed.” (Rachel L. Smith, soprano – graduate of University of Northern Colorado)
Comments from 2011 Druid City participants:
“My heart was opened by a group of people I will never forget. Spending the week with such gifted, talented, intelligent, loving people was a tremendous blessing. I can’t wait to return next year.” (Ashley Drake Estes, soprano - New York, NY)
“This week has been the greatest week of my entire life! I miss my Druid City family already.” (Leah Marsella, soprano – Sam Houston State University, Texas)
“I attended this program last year. My excitement for this year’s experience comes from witnessing this program, in one year, growing to become a powerhousse of intense training that I have not yet experienced anywhere else. The faculty fuels the environment for growth and development. I have every intention of continuing to attend this program once a year. I cannot wait to see what Druid City has in store for its participants in the future” (Katy Green, soprano – recent graduate, Murray State University, Kentucky)
“My experience with the Druid City Opera Workshop was phenomenal. The “Business of Singing” workshops were especiallyresourceful because learning how to market yourself is one of the most important aspects of being a performer. I will always remember ‘This is who we are and this is what we do!’ ” (Vincent Hale, baritone – Stillman College, Tuscaloosa, AL)
“This week has been amazing.” (Courtney Stancil, soprano – Sam Houston State University, Texas)
Comments from 2010 Druid City participants:
“This was an amazing experience for me! I loved how everything was so organized. It was truly inspiring to be around such exciting and energetic faculty members. They were helpful, insightful, and critical while maintaining a positive approach to teaching us. I had a blast and I’m already looking forward to returning next summer.” (Katy Green, soprano – Murray State University, KY)
“The experience gave me the opportunity to involve myself in the operatic art form in a way that was more enriching and fulfilling than anything else I’d ever experienced … a friendly, focused, and professional community.” (Jacob Wooten, baritone – University of Alabama-Birmingham, AL)
“The program exceeded my expectations! Every second was spent honing our craft and growing in the art of opera. ” (Katelyn Perkins, mezzo-soprano – University of Montevallo, AL)
“I learned a great deal from this program. I wish it was longer! The movement and acting classes were tremendously enlightening and helpful.” (Kawika Berthelette, baritone – Colorado State University, Colorado Springs, CO)
“This was an intense program that was reasonably priced. At the end, I felt as if I had grown as a performer. It is really beneficial to have a program like this in the state.” (Marc Anderson, tenor – University of north Alabama, Florence, AL)
“It was fun working with a group of new people with different backgrounds. Everyone was just concerned with doing well and that was quite refreshing.” (Pete Lake, tenor – University of Mobile, AL)
“This week taught me numerous things I’ll never forget. I’m so thankful to have had Druid City constantly push me toward my potential … and this week I was pushed! (Camille Sonnier, soprano – University of Alabama, Tuscaloosa, AL)
About UA and Tuscaloosa:
Tuscaloosa is the home of the main campus of The University of Alabama. (And yes … there is more than football here!)
It’s a beautiful campus and surrounding community, located about an hour away from Birmingham. We are easily reached from the Birmingham airport (we can arrange ground transportation if you come to Tuscaloosa without a car … you won’t need one) and there is plenty to do when you’re not busy with the workshop program — restaurants, museums, cultural events, theater and concerts. We have named our workshop after our city’s nickname — the Druid City.
Please feel free to email us with any questions regarding this program. We would be happy to hear from you and to answer any questions you may have. Thank you for your interest. We’re looking forward to a great opera workshop experience!