When will the application to audition be available for the 2017 Jensen Foundation Vocal Competition?
The application-window for the 2017 Jensen Foundation Vocal Competition closed on Sunday, March 19, 2017.

When is the 2017 Jensen Foundation Vocal Competition?
Preliminary rounds are May 15-18, 2017. Finals are Saturday, May 20, 2017.

How frequently is the Jensen Foundation Vocal Competition held?
The Jensen Vocal Competition is held annually.

Where is the competition held?
The Jensen Foundation Vocal Competition is held in New York City in the beautiful Engelman Recital Hall at Baruch Performing Arts Center.

What are the competition qualification requirements?
An eligible applicant:

  • has never been a first-, second-, or third-place award winner of the Jensen Foundation Vocal Competition;
  • is between the ages of 25 and 35 on May 15, 2017;
  • has been a permanent legal resident of the US for at least one year on May 15, 2017; 
  • provides proof of residency in the form of a valid US passport, valid permanent resident (green) card or a birth certificate. A driver's license is not acceptable as proof of residency, nor are work or study visas;
  • is actively pursuing a career in opera;
  • is not a past or current recipient of a contract for a principal role with an OPERA America Budget Level I company or its international equivalent. Cover, chorus, and comprimario roles are acceptable.

Which opera companies are Level 1 companies?
According to OPERA America, the following companies are Level I:   

  • Dallas Opera
  • Houston Grand Opera
  • Los Angeles Opera
  • Lyric Opera of Chicago
  • Metropolitan Opera
  • San Francisco Opera
  • Santa Fe Opera
  • Seattle Opera
  • Washington National Opera

How do I apply to participate in the Jensen Foundation Vocal Competition?
If you meet the eligibility requirements above, apply to audition via Yaptracker.com when the application goes live each year in early January. To receive news of the application, please sign-up for our newsletter. If you have questions about your eligibility, email Competition Director Lisa V. Gray before you apply, as your application fee is non-refundable!

What is the application fee?
The application fee is $25 and is not refundable. The fee covers the administrative costs associated with processing the application, as well as credit card and registration-tool costs.

How many audition spaces are available, and how are audition spaces filled?
The competition offers 100 singers the opportunity to audition. Applicants are encouraged to apply early, as applications are processed on a first-in basis. 

Is there a waitlist for the competition?
The 2017 Jensen Foundation Vocal Competition will offer preliminary auditions to 100 singers. If there are additional qualified applicants, the Competition Director will create a waitlist. Frequently, singers on the waitlist are offered an audition slot. Any singer who has been offered a slot but is unsure of his/her availability is encouraged to release the audition time as soon as possible, as there are many qualified applicants waiting in the wings. Each applicant offered a position on the waitlist will receive confirmation of the waitlist status and the waitlist procedures after the initial audition schedule is released on Friday, April 7, 2017.

Is a professional accompanist provided?
Yes, the Jensen Foundation Vocal Competition offers all singers a professional accompanist free-of-charge. Read about our 2017 accompanists here. Singers may bring their own accompanists as well. 

Who can attend the Jensen Foundation Vocal Competition Finals?
The Finals are free and open to the public. Singers who are not chosen to compete are encouraged to attend the final competition and awards ceremony.

Who are the judges?
Preliminary rounds (Monday-Thursday) are judged by Jensen Foundation Board members—all current music professionals. The finals are judged by guest judges, rotating each year, chosen from opera professionals experienced in adjudication. Our slate of 2017 Finals Judges is F. Paul Driscoll, Rosalind Elias, and Michael Heaston. Read more about them here. Finals judges do not attend the preliminary rounds and have no communication with the preliminary judges until after the finalists have been chosen. The judges for the Finals are given a specific set of instructions to follow, and decisions are based on that day's performance only.

How are auditions scheduled?
The preliminary rounds are typically scheduled with locally-based singers during the beginning of the week and those traveling from out of town scheduled at the end of the week. Throughout each day, an attempt is made to vary the voice types and stagger those bringing an accompanist, to give our pianist a break. While we try to be accommodating in scheduling, we cannot make changes once the schedule is published. Specific audition times cannot be guaranteed. 

When do singers find out if granted an audition?
All singers who are granted auditions will be notified by email by Friday, April 7, 2017. Audition slots do open up later, due to performance conflicts, travel, illness, and more. Should new audition opportunities emerge, waitlisted applicants are contacted at the earliest possible time. See the Important Dates for more specific 2017 Competition information.