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About Wolf Trap Opera

Wolf Trap Opera (WTO) is a summer residency program of Wolf Trap Foundation for the Performing Arts, offering emerging professional singers one of the best career development and performing experiences in the nation. Through a rigorous annual audition tour, WTO selects its artists from among the best classical vocalists in the country.

Artist-Centric Approach

Rather than choosing singers based on casting requirements, Wolf Trap Opera identifies the most promising artists, and then selects repertoire that will best showcase their talents. This artist-centric, tailored approach to artist development makes Wolf Trap Opera one of the most respected artist training programs in the country, and provides audiences with a variety of intriguing operas that play to the strengths of each season’s distinct mix of talent.

Thriving Alumni

Through its unique performance-based training program, Wolf Trap Opera has contributed to the career development of over 700 emerging singers. WTO alumni can be found working in every top opera house in the U.S., Europe, and beyond. Offstage, WTO has also provided over 300 fellows and apprentices with the skills needed to achieve significant careers in production, design, and administration.

Wolf Trap Opera artists go on to have long and healthy careers on stage, and many of the leading singers of our time started out as a Wolf Trap Opera artists. Distinguished alumni include: Stephanie Blythe, Lawrence Brownlee, Michelle DeYoung, Christine Goerke, Denyce Graves, Nathan Gunn, Alan Held, Dawn Upshaw, and Eric Owens.

The Touchstone


The summer performing season offers a full slate of opera productions,  concerts, recitals, and audience education opportunities.

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Aria Jukebox


WTO’s entire performing roster consists of emerging artists. These singers are the best of their generation, chosen through a rigorous nationwide audition process.

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The Barns at Wolf Trap


There’s nothing quite like opera in a cozy 18th-century barn or outdoors in a pristine national park. WTO performs indoors at The Barns, and outdoors in the Filene Center amphitheatre at Wolf Trap National Park for the Performing Arts.

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Dock 5


Taking opera to new places and unexpected spaces, UNTRAPPED comprises partnerships with other arts organizations in the Washington, D.C. metro area. 

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Over 800 singers have benefited from WTO residencies. Since 1971, Wolf Trap Opera has mounted over 130 productions of over 80 different operas.

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