Department of Opera

With strong roots in knowledge and tradition, the Department of Opera offers education that links to the present day. We offer one of few study programmes around the world for singers with a specialisation solely in opera.

Our education builds on a long, solid tradition with focus on all the different parts of Opera as an art form: music, stage performance, movement, language and theory. At the same time, we want to expand opera as an art form and challenge our present day with reflection on artistic content and develop new models for creating opera.

The education we provide includes musical, musical-dramatic, theoretical and reflective elements and takes place in individual and group lessons, stage interpretation projects, seminars and lectures. Opera as a cross-disciplinary subject plays a part in valuable collaborations at Stockholm University of the Arts. Our research is characterised by close proximity to the practical artistic specialisation within the Opera subject.

We offer study programmes for singers at first-cycle and second-cycle levels. The college has about 20 teachers, 40 students and 3 doctoral students.

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The Bachelor programme in Opera Vocal Performance in A Masked Ball. Photo: Martin Hellström

History 

1773 
King Gustaf III took the initiative to establish training for opera artists, linked to the Royal Theatre, which was founded in the same year. In the 18th and 19th centuries, with just a few short breaks, the training was connected to either the Royal Theatre in Stockholm or the Royal Swedish Academy of Music. 

1913 
The training became organised directly under the Royal Theatre (the Royal Swedish Opera). 

1942 
A special class for opera was launched at the Academy of Music, with students also participating in performances at the Royal Swedish Opera as chorus members, extras or in minor roles. 

1968 
In accordance with a Government decision, the opera class became a separate school named the National School of Musical Drama. Teaching took place in an old patrician house at number 24, Dag Hammarskjölds Väg Road in Stockholm (previous address: 82 Strandvägen) by Djurgårdsbrunnsviken Bay in the city. 

1978 
The school changed its name to the Stockholm Academy of Music Drama and became an independent university college of the arts. Up until the late 1980s it had access to the Alléteatern Theatre on Narvavägen Road, after which it rented space in temporary rehearsal and performance locations for public presentations. 

1986 

The academy changed its name to the University College of Opera, Stockholm. 

2003 
The University College of Opera moved into newly renovated premises on the campus of the Royal Institute of Technology and gained its own studio theatre. 

2014 
The University College of Opera became part of Stockholm University of the Arts.