A 2-Week Intensive experience featuring opera scenes performance, art song recital, and a recording session. SOARS is a two-week vocal training program and recording seminar that offers an exciting opportunity for serious singers to receive operatic and stage training in standard operatic and art song repertoire culminating in a staged & costumed opera scene performance, art song/aria recital. Singers will also have the opportunity to record several demo tracks that can be used in future auditions and pre-screenings. Located in this beautiful lakeside setting, this two-week intensive focuses on all the tools needed for the advanced student to gain stage experience and better understand the recording process, both in hopes of gaining a foothold in a competitive field. Led by respected industry professionals, the session will concentrate on preparation of pre-assigned scenes geared specifically towards those students accepted into the program. In addition, students will benefit from weekly voice lessons, private coaching, workshops on recording, and an audition techniques seminar. Participants are free to enjoy Bay View Festival concerts as well as all of the outdoor recreation options that northern Michigan offers. The program begins with arrivals on Friday, June 5. Some students may wish to then stay for the mainstage musical/opera, departing in August. See Mainstage Opera for details.

  • Two individual 1-hour vocal lessons with Bay View Voice Faculty
  • Private coachings on art song and opera scenes
  • Staging rehearsals with Dr. Sarah Stone (Stage Director) and Nick Gisonde (Stage Director/Fight Choreographer)
  • Acting, movement and stage combat classes
  • Rehearse and give two performances of fully staged opera scenes (sung in original language with piano); one run-out performance and one performance in John M. Hall Auditorium (Bay View, MI)
  • Receive individual Art Song Coachings and perform in an Art Song Recital
  • Collaborative piano seminar covering topics relevant to the field
  • Accompany vocal lessons
  • 2 hours of individual lesson time on repertoire of your choice
  • Dr. Risa Renae Harman – SOARS Program Administrator, Head of Vocal Studies and Voice Faculty, Soprano
  • Dr. Casey Robards – Opera Scenes Musical Director/Conductor
  • Sarah Stone – Opera Scenes Stage Director
  • Nick Gisonde – Opera Scenes, Stage Director and Fight Coordinator
  • Brian Banion – Voice Faculty, Bass
  • Elise DesChamps – Voice Faculty, Mezzo Soprano
  • Dr. Mariah Boucher – Art Song Coach
  • Current resumé
  • Repertoire list (solo and vocal rep required, instrumental or chamber music optional)
  • Provide a brief summary of your collaborative piano and coaching experience and state what you hope to gain from attending the Bay View Music Festival.
  • All piano auditions require submission of recordings. Video is preferred but audio will be accepted.

Submit recordings (YouTube links or other electronic delivery) of the following:

  • One aria of your choosing
  • Two art songs in any language
  • One selection of music theater, jazz, or American Songbook
Program Suspended Temporarily Due to COVID-19.



For general questions, please contact Chris Ludwa at (231) 225-8877 or chris@bayviewassociation.org. For more specific questions about this program, please contact Voice Chair Risa Renae Harman at harmanrr@aol.com.