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Institute of Bel Canto Studies: 5/23 - 6/10/2016

Le Chiavi - The keys to Bel Canto

The Texas Music Festival® invites applications for Le Chiavi: The Institute of Bel Canto Studies at the University of Houston Moores School of Music. This intensive program is designed for advanced college, graduate, and pre-professional singers.

An internationally acclaimed faculty provides individually designed instruction in the art of bel canto, adapted for each participant:

  • Daily individual coaching and observations equivalent to over 35 hours per week
  • Daily master classes including techniques in dramatic interpretation and theatrical presentation
  • Stage movement
  • Emphasis on performance practices relating to musical interpretation, ornamentation, diction, and Fach
  • Classroom instruction of specialized topics relating to bel canto, including historical precedents and the current expectations and demands of professional performance
  • Individual voice lessons available for participants (optional at no additional charge)
  • A final concert of arias, songs, and ensembles
  • Limited enrollment and generous tuition fellowships


How to Apply and Audition

  • Completed application form with $60 application fee (payable by check or credit card).
  • One page resume
  • Audition Repertoire: Three vocal selections, including at least one aria, or song, by Bellini, Donizetti, or Rossini.
  • Option 1 - National Live Audition at the University of Houston Moores School of Music: February 20, 2016
    Please indicate you preference for a live audition on the submitted application form. The Institute Director will contact you for scheduling.
  • Option 2 - Recorded Audition: Submit a DVD audition of the required repertoire OR post your audition on YouTube and email the links to msonnenb@Central.UH.EDU
  • International Applicants Not Currently in the U.S.: If accepted, you are responsible for obtaining your own visa to attend Le Chiavi 2016.

Application Deadlines:

  • For National Live Auditions in Houston: received by Monday, February, 1, 2016
  • For Recorded Audition (DVD or YouTube links): DEADLINE EXTENDED TO FRIDAY, APRIL 1, 2016

Application/DVD mailing address:

Institute of Bel Canto Studies
Texas Music Festival
3333 Cullen Blvd., Room 120
Houston, TX 77204-4017

Fees (all fees are non-refundable)

  • Application fee: $60 (due with application)
  • Registration fee: $900 (due upon acceptance  - includes approximately 35 hours of instruction per week)
  • Tuition: $0 (All participants receive a fellowship for the remaining tuition valued at $3200 underwritten by the Immanuel & Helen Olshan Foundation)
  • Optional room and board: $1100 (University of Houston dormitory; double occupancy; three meals daily in UH dorm cafeteria)

For more information

Melanie Sonnenberg, Director

Click here to download the 2016 Le Chiavi brochure