Monday, January 23, 2017




The New Jersey Association of Verismo Opera, the house opera company of the Bergen Performing Arts Center (bergenPAC), invites singers to audition for the Verismo Opera Chorus. Artistic Director Lucine Amara announces professional, amateur, and retired male and female singers may auditionfor the Verismo Opera Chorus.

WHEN:  Wednesdays, January 25 and February 1, 8, 15, and 22 at 6:30 p.m. 
WHERE: 44 Armory Street in Englewood, New Jersey.
For all auditions, an appointment is required and must be made in advance. To schedule an audition appointment, call (201) 886-0561 or contact

Amara, who began her luminous operatic career with the San Francisco Opera Chorus and performed for over four decades with The Metropolitan Opera in 56 roles, encourages singers to audition for the Verismo Opera Chorus and develop their vocal tool kit. "Singers, start the New Year and expand your vocal experience, do something special and rewarding, and join the Verismo Opera Chorus. Performing with the chorus provides you with the opportunity to gain experience and develop a career by singing in other languages, appearing on a professional stage, and assuming the appearance of someone else. Members of the Verismo Opera Chorus make new friends, wear beautiful costumes, and perform beautiful music," she said.

This spring, the Verismo Opera Chorus will sing in Italian and perform live under the company's new Chorus Director, Michael Wittenburg, in Giuseppe Verdi's magnificent opera, Aida, on April 23, 2017. The production will be presented at 3 p.m. at bergenPAC, located at 30 North Van Brunt Street, in Englewood, New Jersey.

Preparation for the Verismo Opera includes instruction in the pronunciation of the text in Italian, vocal warm-ups, learning the music and detailed staging. The opera will be fully staged and performed with the cast in costume under the direction of Stage Director Evelyn La Quaif. A live orchestra will accompany this resplendent opera led by Principal Conductor and Music Director Lucy Arner. 

Audition Process

  • Male singers, representing all vocal ranges and ages, are especially needed.
  • Adult applicants should have a rudimentary working ability to read music and experience singing.
  • Teenagers, ages 17 to 19, may also audition for the Verismo Opera Chorus and must read music and have some prior vocal experience singing with a school, choir, or another performing group or organization.
  • Previous stage experience and foreign language study are desirable.
  • Applicants who have these skills and experiences will be given preference.

The audition consists of singing five note scales. During the audition process, each singer's range and vocal category will be determined. Applicants do not need to bring a song or music to the audition.

An application may be downloaded at For information or to schedule an appointment to audition for the chorus, call (201) 886-0561 or contact

Accessible Site
The audition site is handicapped accessible and designated handicapped parking is available in the adjacent lot. The New Jersey Association of Verismo Opera is committed to ensuring its programs and services are accessible. Vocalists requiring a special accommodation or with specific questions about the physical features of a facility where Verismo Opera performs may call (201) 886-0561 at least two weeks prior to the audition.

The season is made possible, in part, with funds provided by the New Jersey Council on the Arts/Department of State, through grant funds administered by the Bergen County Department of Parks, Division of Cultural and Historic Affairs. Other supporters include the Children’s Aid Foundation, Robert J. Campbell, MD, Cesare L. Santeramo, KSJ, Paul Weiss Matching Fund, The Gerda Lissner Foundation, Inc., and Vanguard Charitable Endowment Fund.

About New Jersey Association of Verismo Opera
For 28 years, the New Jersey Association of Verismo Opera has been an integral part of the region’s classical music culture. Led by Metropolitan Opera luminary Lucine Amara, Verismo Opera delivers a rich, grand opera experience for performers and viewers.

As the Bergen Performing Arts Center's house opera company, Verismo Opera provides performing opportunities for young musicians and artists through its semi-annual productions at the theatre and concerts held in community settings. Community members are invited to get involved as supernumeraries and volunteers.

An annual international vocal competition is conducted in November with finals generally drawing artists throughout the United States, Canada, and Europe. Verismo Opera also organizes opera workshops, master classes and concerts and offers affordable, highly professional productions.

For more information, visit Verismo Opera's web site,; follow the company on Facebook, or Twitter @NJVerismoOpera; or call (201) 886-0561.

IMAGE: : New Jersey Association of Verismo presents Giuseppe Verdi's Aida on April 23, 2017, at the Bergen Performing Arts Center.