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Domenic J. Pellicciotti Opera Composition Prize

 Domenic J. Pellicciotti Opera Composition Prize
Deadline: 15 January 2020
Date Posted: 17 October 2019
Details: 2022 Opera Commissioning & Production Award

The award-winning Crane Opera Ensemble and The Domenic J. Pellicciotti Opera Composition Prize seeks proposals from composer/librettist teams for a $25,000 Opera Commissioning Award. The winning team will be awarded a commission to complete the proposed work for a November 2022 premiere at The Crane School of Music, State University of New York, Potsdam.

The prize was founded by Dr. Gary C. Jaquay to honor his life partner Dominic J. Pellicciotti, an ardent fan of opera. The award seeks to encourage and acknowledge the creation of new opera works that explore themes related to social justice, diversity, equity and/or inclusion.

Deadline for Proposal Submission: January 15, 2020
Submission should be submitted to Dr. Josh Miller, Director of Opera, at

Preliminary Proposal should include:
• Project description including its artistic impact and includes how it reflects the theme of the Pellicciotti Prize.
• Proposed Synopsis & Scene breakdown, including a character breakdown with vocal types. Proposed orchestration (modest forces suggested with creative instrumentation encouraged).
• Composers: Three samples of previous work (total maximum timing of 30 minutes). The works should demonstrate both vocal and orchestral writing appropriate to the proposed forces. MIDI files are acceptable, but it is preferable to have at least one of a live performance. Scores and audio recordings (PDF and MP3 formats only) must be included for each sample. Samples of your proposed 2022 score are encouraged.
• Librettists: Three excerpts of work samples (at least one piece must be a text that has been set to music). Submission of texts must be in PDF format. Audio recording(s) of works set to music (MP3 format only) for at least one of the samples are requested, if available. Excerpts of texts not set to music should reflect the author’s ability to write for a dramatic setting. Samples of your proposed 2022 libretto are encouraged.
• Headshots and bios for each Composer & Librettist (500 words max).
• Electronic applications should be submitted via DropBox, GoogleDrive, etc. with folders representing each of the above categories. Submissions of physical media will not be accepted.

• The narrative or overall theme of the proposed opera should explore subjects related to social justice, diversity, equity and/or inclusion.
• Proposed operas should be appropriate for students in an undergraduate music program to perform (musically, technically and dramatically).
• SATB or some sort of mixed-voice ensemble is desirable.
• Total length of winning project is expected to be around 80 minutes in length.
• Engraving and part preparation will be the responsibility of the award recipients.
• Persons directly associated with SUNY Potsdam or The Crane School of Music, or previous winners of the Pellicciotti Prize are not eligible to participate.
• Only proposals for new works (i.e. projects which have not yet proceeded beyond initial planning stages) will be considered.

Questions should be directed to Dr. Josh Miller at

• January 15, 2020 Commission Proposals Due
• April 2020 Wining Commission is Announced
• November 2020 Workshop Draft of Piano/Vocal Score Due
• Spring 2021 Workshop with Composer, Librettist, Singers and Pianist
• September 2021 Draft of Final Piano/Vocal Score Due
• January 2022 Final Piano/Vocal Score Due
• April 2022 Draft of Full Orchestral Score Due
• July 2022 Final Full Orchestral Score and Parts Due
• November 2022 Performance and Financial Award Granted