State Opera Winter School combines high level performing arts tuition with an emphasis on developing stage skills and ensemble skills.

The inaugural State Opera Winter School is open to senior secondary and tertiary students who have a passion for singing and acting on the stage.

Running in Adelaide over two weeks between Monday 24 June and Saturday 6 July 2019, the school aims to provide strong foundational learning around the craft of opera and includes valuable performance experience alongside professional opera singers as part of the program.

Through coaching and classes by industry professionals, Winter School graduates will emerge from the program having learned from, and been mentored by, working artists at the top of their profession.


Applications close 29 March 2019. Applications received after this date will be considered only under special circumstances.

Applicants are required to email a current CV, headshot and a digital audition video of no more than 5 mins, containing an aria or equivalent piece of music. Recordings are accepted as YouTube, Vimeo or Dropbox links via the application form.

Applicants selected may be requested to attend a live audition in the beginning of 2019 for the audition panel. Auditionees must travel to their audition at their own expense.

The fee for State Opera Winter School is $850 + GST and full payment is to be made prior to Winter School commencing.

Thanks to our supporters, State Opera is able to offer a small number of bursaries and scholarships for participants who meet criteria.

All participants must travel to Adelaide at their own expense to participate in the program.

Monday 24 June – Saturday 6 July 2019

  • The Winter School comprises daily performance, music and stage-craft coaching alongside the development and rehearsals of State Opera’s new production of Boojum!
  • The School culminates in three public performances of Boojum! at the Dunstan Playhouse on Friday 5 and Saturday 6 July
  • Ensemble, minor and major roles are available for suitable candidates, and inclusion in the Winter School is via completion of a successful application and audition process
  • Applicants are expected to be of an excellent standard for their age, with strong musical skills
  • Staff will be announced in the coming weeks
  • Live call-backs may be held in Adelaide in early 2019 for successful applicant


  • Applicants are asked to provide an audition video of no more than 5 mins which includes an aria or equivalent piece or music
  • Applicants also need to submit the application form with a current CV and headshot
  • Applications are subject to a non-refundable administration fee of $50

Applications close 29 March 2019. Offers made early April.


  • Applicants should currently be enrolled in upper-secondary or tertiary studies. (Proof may be requested)
  • There is not a strict age limit, but all participants must be able to cope with the physical and mental demands of an intensive rehearsal environment
  • Strong music skills are required (AMEB Gr 7 or equivalent)
  • Advanced music-reading skills are recommended
  • A strong working command of English is required
  • All participants must be available to attend ALL rehearsals and performances. No exceptions can be made
  • All participants must be able to attend rehearsals at various Adelaide locations including State Opera Studio, Netley and Adelaide Festival Centre

If you have particular questions around your eligibility, contact Libby Parker (08) 8226 4790 to discuss


We believe every young person has the right to education and opportunity. Thanks to our supporters, State Opera will be able to offer assistance to some applicants who meet the appropriate criteria.

  • Bursaries are available for those facing financial hardship.
  • Merit-based Scholarships are available to candidates of exceptional standard or genuine artistic potential

To be considered for bursaries and or scholarships, complete the relevant section of the Application Form

You may be required to provide some evidence of financial hardship.

Not quite an opera, not quite a musical comedy, Boojum! is an irresistible contemporary snark hunt. 

Based on Lewis Carroll’s legendary poem “The Hunting of the Snark”Boojum! leads us on a journey as we uncover Nonsense, Truth and Lewis Carroll, or as he was known to his family Reverend Charles Dodgson.

Described as possessing a ‘Gilbert-and-Sullivan-meets-David-Lynch vibe’ the piece is both a human examination of Carroll and his moral true-self Dodgson, and a meandering, quirky, beautiful feast of words and music. It is nothing short of ‘light-hearted but deadly-serious choral fantasy.’

Boojum! by Peter and Martin Wesley-Smith was premiered by State Opera in the 1986 Adelaide Festival, directed by Gale Edwards and conducted by Andrew Greene. It has subsequently been performed in the US to critical acclaim.

Boojum! is one of The Lost Operas of Oz – a three year program bringing a focus to Australian operas that have, for one reason or another, disappeared into the archives. State Opera Artistic Director Stuart Maunder is committed to bringing these Australian works back for contemporary audiences.

5-6 July 2019
Dunstan Playhouse

Directed by Joseph Mitchell
Conducted by Warwick Stengårds

For enquiries pertaining to applications and all aspects of the Winter School, please contact Winter School Co-ordinator Robyn Brookes.

Please do not submit payment unless you have received confirmation from State Opera Confirming your acceptance into Winter School.

State Opera South Australia Acknowledges The Friends of State Opera as the principal partner of Winter School.