Sydney Trotter of Ancaster is attending Washington National Opera (WNO’s) Opera Institute at American University, a competitive pre-professional training program in the vocal arts. Sydney is a freshman at Wilfrid Laurier University and was selected out of hundreds of teenagers around the world to receive one of 28 positions in the rigorous three-week program. Since June 25, she has joined fellow aspiring musicians in Washington, D.C. to learn the craft from internationally acclaimed opera professionals. Highlights of the training program include master classes with acclaimed artists such as Harolyn Blackwell and Richard Stilwell, daily private voice instruction, and a wide variety of courses intended to develop skills as future artists. WNO Opera Institute concludes on July 14, when the students will perform on the Kennedy Center Millennium Stage, an event which will be streamed live on the Kennedy Center’s website.
Sydney Trotter, a soprano, first developed an interest in music when she was 10 years old, and it has since become her greatest passion. She loves classical music, especially Mozart, and has performed in several theatrical venues in her community, including two Opera Hamilton productions as part of the children’s chorus. Sydney says that the Opera Institute is a “bit of an adventure” but that she is excited to spend three weeks with equally enthusiastic students who have a deep appreciation for opera.
Each year, students come from as far as California, Mexico, Canada, Norway, Bahrain, and Belgium to attend WNO Opera Institute. Nearly all participants pursue degrees in vocal performance, many at leading conservatories around the country.