Cleveland Opera Theater Education 

Innovative educational programming in the greater Cleveland area schools, libraries and community centers engages students of all ages in the operatic artform.  Participants are involved in the creative art-making process to learn valuable team building and collaboration skills that are applicable to a broad range of learning situations and real-world experiences.

College & Grad Students


Young Artist Program and Internship Opportunities

Education & Outreach programing provides access to opera throughout Cleveland and the Northeast Ohio region.  Engaging the community in opera lays the foundation for future audience building, and also inspires future artists and supporters of art and culture.   Fostering future audience and arts organization supporters is beneficial to the operatic art form itself, and to the regional economy as well.  COT Education and Outreach features programming that is related to current COT productions offering specific programs designed for interactive learning and creative experiences for early children, middle and high school aged students, as well as adults in Cleveland and Northeast Ohio.  



Adult Community Education Programs

Cleveland Opera Theater Community Education Programs provide a rare opportunity for community members to explore the complex and interdisciplinary world of opera and operatic arts from professionals in the field.  Designed to spark interest in music and the arts, and to build a deeper sense of active community that is rooted in the creative art-making process, programs engage adults, in the greater community in the creative art-making process of live opera theater.  Programing is available to community members across Northeast Ohio increasing the accessibility and understanding of opera through community engagement activities.  Participants build self esteem establishing self discipline and motivation habits, and develop team-based collaboration skills applicable to a breadth of real-world life scenarios.   


Cleveland Opera Theater teaching artists engage community youth & adults in activities including workshops and seminars to prepare for mainstage rehearsal work.  Workshops engage participants in an exploration of stage craft, acting, movement, music, opera history, vocal technique and performance technique.  Participants broaden their performance and artistic interpretation skills, and develop a unique understanding of the music, orchestration, plot, characters, libretto and design & production, as well as the use of operatic material in popular culture.


Participants then work alongside professional artists in rehearsals and main stage performances in the ensemble of mainstage performances.  Participants experience an immersive, professional opera experience inclusive of rehearsals, coachings, workshops, demonstrations that culminates in main stage productions at the Cleveland Masonic Auditorium.  Located in MidTown Cleveland, this historic venue boasts one of the finest acoustics for live un-amplified sound in the world. It was the location of numerous famous recordings made by the Cleveland Orchestra and utilized by recording companies such a Decca and Deutsche Grammophon.  


More than 2,000 ticket buying audience members, and more than 300 audience members granted free tickets are expected to attend the live performances at the venue at the center of arts-based community developments in MidTown Cleveland.  

Additionally, portions of this program will be broadcast as the "WCLV Opera Encore" series in partnership with COT following a Metropolitan Opera Broadcast to provide further outreach to community adults leading up to the COT mainstage performance.


University of Cleveland Prep School (iCAN School)

Grades: 2 -8

Number of Participating Students: 30

Number of Sessions: 2 45-minute workshops, approximately 17 rehearsals

Program Overview: Students work closely with Cleveland Opera Theater teaching artists and mainstage cast members to prepare for their role as the children's chorus in the annual spring mainstage production. Students receive professional instruction and participate in a flipped residency where they are in residence at the opera company.  Cleveland Opera Theater artists work with ICAN Scholars both in the school facilities and at the Masonic Auditorium.  Two additional workshops aligned with state standards in music, theater arts, dance and ELA reinforce the performance and interpretation skills any performing artist needs.   The process culminates in the scholars being featured in the children's chorus of the production.  Free tickets are provided for the family, friends and school community members to come watch the students in performances.



Cuyahoga Falls High School

Grades: 9 - 12

Number of Participating Students: 150

Number of Sessions: Four 30-minute workshops per class

Program Overview:  The residency includes an in-school performance by Cleveland Opera Theater cast members and four 30-minute workshops aligned with music and theater arts standards covering topics such as the operatic form, tradition and repertory.  The school’s faculty also receives a 60-minute professional development workshop on using opera in the classroom.  The participating students and faculty are provided with free tickets to attend the main stage performance after which they receive a behind the scenes tour and attend a question and answer session with the cast and production team.  As this collaboration and residency develops there are opportunities for Cuyahoga Falls students to be participate in the main stage performances a ensemble members in the chorus and as apprentice members of the Design and Production team gaining hands on experience in technical theater, production design, stage management and performance.  These skills can be translated into careers in the arts and also applied to a wide range of academic and professional situations necessitating teamwork, creative collaboration, and cognitive reasoning.





Distance Learning

Distance learning workshops are broadcast via Ideastream and WCLV and include a performance of selections from the current Cleveland Opera Theater mainstage production performed by the cast as well as a workshop about opera history, vocal technique and performance technique. The workshopa are available to schools across Northeast Ohio and are designed to spark students’ interest in careers in music and the arts, and in attending music and arts performances.  This workshop will be a rare opportunity for students to explore the complex and interdisciplinary world of opera and operatic arts from professionals in the field.




Opera For Teens

The Opera for Teens program provides innovative after-school programming during the school year, and an intensive 10-day intensive conservatory audition program to prepare rising high school juniors and seniors for college auditions.  


Cleveland Opera Theater Opera for Teens will launch during the 2015 - 2016 season. Programming will feature collaborative teambuilding and community engagement for teens. Instruction in acting, singing, interpreting text, communication, creative thinking, and theater design & production culminates in a public performance project showcasing the participants and their work.  Participants in the after school program will be engaged in creating original work.  Participants in the summer intensive will focus on prepared repertoire to be used in upcoming auditions.  More information to come! 2015 -2016 registration information will be posted in the late summer of 2015. 

Young Artist Program


The Cleveland Opera Theater Young Artist Program develops the next generation of rising stars in opera.  


Exceptionally talented Young Artists are chosen from conservatories and schools of music in the region.  These young artists have the opportunity to perform in the ensembles and supporting roles in COT main stage productions, and are featured in other selected Education and Outreach performances. 


Cleveland Opera Theater has long supported highly talented students from The Cleveland Institute of Music, Baldwin Wallace Conservatory of Music, Oberlin Conservatory of Music, and The Kent State University Hugh A. Glauser School of Music.  In order to further support and promote the development of emerging talent in the area COT is currently developing a more robust Young Artist Program to include a master class series, coachings, workshops in professional development, and career advancement opportunities with leading industry professionals, in addition to the current performance opportunities.  More on this exciting program to come! 



For those not familiar with Young Artist Programs:

Young Artist Programs, or YAP's as they are called in the Opera industry, are a vital component to the training and development of up and coming talent. YAP's provide an opportunity for advanced students to hone their skills and learn from established industry professionals, as they transition from student to professional artist. In this way, the YAP experience for Opera Singers in training is similar to that of the Residency experience for Medical students in training.


Bring opera to your school or organization!  Programs serve K - 12  and adult audiences


COT Education programming brings opera into schools, libraries and community centers throughout Northeast Ohio!


  • Exciting performances engage and entertain

  • Provide a greater understanding of and appreciation for the operatic artform

  • Educate and prepare the opera audiences and artists of tomorrow!

To book a performance for the 2015 - 2016 season, or inquire about education & outreach programing designed specifically to meet your needs please contact us at:


COT Education and Outreach programing aligns with the Common Core State Standards.

More About Education and Outreach

100% of Your Tax-Deductible donation will support Cleveland Opera Theater!

Cleveland Opera Theater
5000 Euclid Avenue, #1001
Cleveland, Ohio  44103      

Take the RTA to the Opera

Follow Us 

  • Facebook Reflection
  • Instagram Social Icon
  • Twitter Reflection
  • LinkedIn
  • Pinterest

© 2019 Cleveland Opera Theater