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Ribbon Funded

About this project


Chicago Opera Theater is a not for profit opera company whose mission is to engage curious audiences through adventurous opera experiences that provoke strong emotions and a thoughtful dialogue. 


Chicago Opera Theater’s Opera for All program guides students through the process of creating an opera from beginning to end.  Students begin the year by participating in theater and singing games.  After they become more comfortable with singing and acting, the students create their own 45 minute opera.  Every classroom shares ideas for their script after attending a special field trip to a Chicago museum.   The students participate in creating song lyrics, composing melodies, designing and completing the sets, props, costumes, and learning the dance choreography.  After 30 weeks of creating and practicing, students perform their opera for their peers, parents, teachers, and friends. 


Opera for All brings the process of creating their own opera to life for students in Chicago.  This unique creative experience allows students to engage with many different art forms while adding to the classroom learning environment.  They learn creative writing, journaling, and poetry through script writing, opera reflection journals, and writing song lyrics.  Working together on a project also builds class morale.    Participation in a creative outlet like Opera for All allows students a safe place to explore and boosts engagement and students’ self-confidence.

One Opera for All Partner Teacher wrote, “It takes confidence to sing in front of the class, yet they do it. They also defend each other’s songs within their regular classroom showing their sense of community within the opera group.” 


The budget for one Opera for All School is $20,000

This money goes to:

  • 2 Teaching Artists
  • Guest choreographer, lyricist, composer, and set and costume designer
  • Opera Class & Art Supplies
  • Opera performance in their school
  • Visits from professional opera singers
  • Field trip to inspire the writing of the student’s opera
  • Bussing to see a Chicago Opera Theater performance


$10 – Thank You note – A Donation at this level allows one student to participate in the class field trips

$25 -  OFA Logo Button – A Donation at this level purchases student created performance t-shirts for 5 OFA students

$50 –  Photo of Students and Program from final 2013 performance - A Donation at this level pays for our Artist to create set and costume pieces with one classroom

$100 – Score of Class Composed Song – A Donation at this level pays for one day of opera class for 25 students

$250 – Student created and signed poster – A Donation at this level allows for one student to participate in the program for a year

$500 – Pair of tickets to a COT’s Joan of Arc: September 21, 25, 27, or 29 (best seats available, excludes A+) and listed in the 2013 - 2014 OFA programs – A Donation at this level allows professional opera singers to visit two schools, reaching over 200 students

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