Cosi fan tutte

Where does the Festival take place?

HSOF takes place in downtown Halifax, Nova Scotia, on the east coast of Canada. Halifax is a human-scale, beautiful, historic and friendly city by the sea, and a wonderful place to spend four weeks in the summer rehearsing and performing.

Pre-COVID we rehearsed and performed largely at the Dalhousie Arts Centre. After our COVID-induced break, we made the wonderful Maritime Conservatory of Performing Arts our home. Starting 2024 we’ll be back at Dal!

All participating artists are responsible for finding and paying for accommodation in Halifax during the duration of the Festival.

How can I be cast in one of the Festival's shows?

Since COVID, we’ve been casting all participants from recorded distance auditions. There are no age limits or citizenship requirements for this programme. Each role will be double cast, if possible and each participant will have at least two public performances of his or her role. All participants will be expected to arrive with their parts securely memorized, as if for a professional engagement.

The application process includes an application form with a $35 fee and a way to upload files and documents. All auditions are personally reviewed by Artistic Director Nina Scott-Stoddart.

What is the Halifax Summer Opera Festival?

HSOF is a summer opera training program in Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada that runs for four weeks,  giving international singers from university undergrads to professionals opportunities to learn roles in the context of performing an entire, fully-staged opera. Masterclasses in dramatic and musical interpretation and auditioning and private coaching are also a part of the process. Operas are double-cast as much as possible, with each participant receiving at least two public performances.

We are a not-for-profit charitable organization and have been operating since 2005, with two years off during COVID.



What does life at the Festival look like?

Your work at the Festival will begin with two days of music rehearsals, followed by an intense 12 days of blocking and running the show. A typical day will include a group Alexander Technique class or acting warmup in the morning, followed by six to eight hours of rehearsals.  As a break from staging, we’ll offer a series of masterclasses on dramatic or musical interpretation and auditioning techniques. We take one day off a week.

Then we move into the performance venues for tech and dress rehearsals and the four public performances, usually spread over two weekends.

Performances will be accompanied by piano, sometimes with added orchestral instruments, and performed in the original language, with projected English translations where needed for the added enjoyment of our audiences.

In addition to performing in your opera, you may also be invited to perform at special events in Halifax, including library lecture-recitals, art song concerts and other events as scheduled by the Festival.