About the National Opera Studio

Who are we?

The National Opera Studio offers expert, tailored training to a small number of exceptional opera singers and repetiteurs for free. They leave our nine-month Global Talent Programme with the artistry, confidence and contacts to thrive in a lifetime of opera. Our story goes back to 1948, and generations of our alumni have worked in the world’s great houses, but we always look to the future and constantly evolve to the needs of the art form.

Who do we train?

National Opera Studio Young Artists come from any background, anywhere in the world. There is no upper age limit, but they are usually in their 20s or 30s. They may have studied at conservatoire or taken another path, but either way, they are passionate about opera and have more to discover about their own capabilities. They’re curious, ambitious and open, and want to explore their creative boundaries in a safe, nurturing, but challenging environment.

What makes the National Opera Studio unique?

  • Partnerships with the six national opera companies offer high-level opportunities, performances, residencies and networks
  • Training on our Global Talent Programme is completely free and is tailored to the individual needs of each artist
  • We work with world-renowned coaches
  • Our historic building houses state-of-the-art filming and livestreaming facilities
  • We place an equal emphasis on acting and stage presence
  • Small numbers offer unparalleled contact time
  • Our holistic outlook means we cover an unusually wide range of relevant areas of the profession
  • Good physical and mental health are fundamental in everything we teach
  • Our Sounding Board panel of professional opera singers helps to ensure that our work is always relevant and effective

My time as a young singer at the National Opera Studio was so important because it set me upon with a work ethic which I have carried with me throughout my career. We were lucky enough to work with great singers, directors, conductors and coaches and as well as discovering new and exciting repertoire, we learned to perform not only as a soloist but also as part of an ensemble

~ Susan Bullock CBE, soprano (1984/85 alumna)

Why is our work important?

At the National Opera Studio we always look to the future and remain connected to the profession we serve.


Technical and artistic excellence are vital for future generations of musicians but, in an increasingly competitive world, artists must also be mentally and physically resilient. Our holistic training sets singers and repetiteurs up both to succeed and thrive.


We all bear responsibility for ensuring that future generations of musicians and audiences are representative of our society. The National Opera Studio is committed to making opera more inclusive and relevant through our Global and National training programmes and with our local outreach work.


A key part of winning audiences to opera is how we communicate through stagecraft and acting. At the National Opera Studio they are an essential part of our training.


The future is increasingly technological, whether in auditions, performances or promotion, and we offer filming and livestreaming opportunities during the year through use of our cutting-edge audio-visual equipment. Our Young Artists are able to video performances and leave with high-quality recordings. 

Overview of the year

(Based on 2023/24, subject to change)

Performance opportunities

  • Throughout the year, our Young Artists will perform in several projects including cultivation events, livestreamed recitals, masterclasses, scenes at our home in Wandsworth, and a song project at Wigmore Hall.


  • During the year at NOS, our Young Artists take part in several staged orchestral residency performances in collaboration with our Partner Companies. During the 2023/24 year, our Young Artists will give performances with Welsh National Opera, Opera North, Scottish Opera, English National Opera, and Glyndebourne. These residencies offer an opportunity to rehearse and perform at one of our Partner Companies' homes. Our Young Artists benefit from experiencing working with each company and receive support from them during this week.

    Additionally, with each residency, our Young Artists give a performance of their work in a London venue, accompanied by piano, where we invite industry guests.


In addition they work with a wide range of specialist coaches including:

    • Music and voice coaches:  Michael Harper, Alex Ingram, Della Jones,  Rachel Nicholls, Martin Pacey, Julian Perkins, Michael Pollock, Peter Robinson, Paul Wynne Griffiths
    •  Language coaches: Florence Daguerre de Hureaux, Matteo Dalle Fratte, Dominik Dengler, Florent Mourier, Alessandra Fasolo, Lada Valesova
    • Stage skills and film coaches: Sarah Fahie, Kate Flatt, Sebastian Harcombe, Alisdair Kitchen, Kate Maravan, Rebecca Meitlis, John Ramster.
    • Resilience coaches: Cliodhna O'Connor (Peak Performance), Ita O'Brien (intimacy), Dr. Sue Garlick (medical), Margaret Papoutsis (osteopath), Sophie Medlin (nutrition), Steve Phillips (agents and CV/Biography advice), Samantha Holderness (personal branding)

Filming days once a month

  • Roughly every month, we schedule Filming Days. These are opportunities for you to create high-quality digital content that you can use for your audition packages, website, and social media. These sessions are managed by an NOS AV technician and utilize our state-of-the-art multi-camera setup.