Creating New Opera

Working in experimental, investigative and laboratory ways, you will develop new methods to create opera, in collaboration with others. The education will provide you with tools to redraw the opera map and take opera into the future.

A New Programme

Creating New Opera is a collaboration between the Royal College of Music in Stockholm and Stockholm University of the Artsexternal link (Departments of Performing arts and Opera). The programme will bring together students from various disciplines within opera, music and performing arts and is aimed at those with the desire of taking opera into the future. You may be a instrumentalist, composer, stage designer, librettist/playwright, costume designer, opera singer, lighting designer, mask and wig designer or a director, but do not necessarily have to have previous experience working with opera.

The programme starts for the first time in the fall semester of 2020.

Under the supervision of professors and senior lecturers from the various departments and external experts, you will develop collaborative methods and also sharpen your own ability to creatively contribute to the creation of new opera. Throughout the programme, you will work both practically and theoretically with opera through laboratories and seminars. The practical elements will take place in collaborative forms and are characterised by a non-hierarchical approach that emphasises the exchange of knowledge between the various disciplines. The programme aims to broaden the concept of what opera and performing arts can be. As a second-cycle programme, it lays the groundwork for future artistic research.


Year 1

Semester 1:

Opera laboratories 1, 15 credits
Methods in artistic research, 7.5 credits Opera – theory and practice 1, 7.5 credits

Semester 2:

Opera laboratories 2, 15 credits
Methods in artistic research 2, 7.5 credits Opera – theory and practice 2, 7.5 credits

Year 2

Semester 3:

Opera laboratories 3, 15 credits
Methods in artistic research 3, 7.5 credits Opera – theory and practice 3, 7.5 credits

Semester 4:

Independent degree project – opera, 30 credits

Programme Content

The programme consists of four semesters and has both practical and theoretical elements. The education mainly revolves around the opera laboratories which take place during the first three semesters, where all students collaborate on different themes within opera, such as the space, the thought and the feeling, the voice and the body, and the narrative. The laboratory work is collaborative and non-hierarchical, which means that no discipline’s interpretation takes precedence over another. The students will collaboratively develop methods for the creation of opera, thus broadening the concepts of what both opera and performing arts in general can be. The education focuses on the exchange and absorption of knowledge from the different students and their disciplines as a method of developing new, shared knowledge.

The opera laboratories are supported by the theory and practice courses, where an in-depth analysis of opera’s disciplines and narrative methods is explored and discussed from an expanded performing arts perspective.

The programme lays the groundwork for research, and throughout the courses in Methods in artistic research, students are introduced to current research, they review research methods, methods for documentation, and the presentation of research-based art.

Applicants to the programme must, among other things, describe the artistic and exploratory work that they intend to pursue during the programme. With the support of a supervisor and in dialogue with the insights and knowledge you gain throughout the programme, you will develop your research topic. Before the final semester, this topic must be definitively formulated.

The last semester involves you producing an independent project. This will be presented and examined in three parts. The first part is your exploratory work, presented in an artistic, performative way. The second part consists of a reflection on that work. The third part is collaborative, and here the students will present the results of the laboratories conducted during the programme in a form that has been jointly determined in dialogue with the supervisors.

The aim of the programme is not to create an entire work of opera. It should develop your methods and knowledge so that you can create new works after completing the education, through the spirit of collaboration and in a way that can develop the operatic art. The idea is for the education to provide you with tools to reshape the field of opera and take opera into the future.

Entry Requirements

You need to fulfil the general entry requirement for studies at the second cycle (a Bachelor's degree), as well as the specific entry requirements for the programme:

  • A bachelor degree in fine arts
  • English 5external link
  • A grade of Pass in the qualification test within the specification applied to

For further information regarding admissions, please see the description of entrance tests below.

If you don’t fulfil the formal entry requirements for the programme you may apply for recognition of prior learning, in other words that the knowledge and competence you have acquired through other activities are assessed as the equivalent of the formal merits that are required. Submit your application for recognition of prior learning with your application for the programme. Read more about recognition of prior learning.

You may also apply for an exemption/a waiver, that allows you to proceed to the selection process even though you don’t meet the general admission requirements. Submit your application for an exemption/a waiver together with your application.

Valuable Prior Knowledge

In addition to the entry requirements for the programme, it is valuable if you have other prior knowledge, such as a good ability to cooperate with other people and professional groups. You are to feel secure in your own artistry and maintain a high artistic and technical level within your discipline. You have an ambition to develop and contribute with your creative ability with the goal of creating new opera. The programme does not involve any skill training within your own discipline, which means that you, for example, as a singer or musician, will not receive voice lessons or lessons on your instrument.

Time plan 2020

15 January: Application deadline

24 January: Deadline for submitting supporting documents

Mid February: Notification regarding who is being called to complete a test on site in Stockholm

3-5 March: Test on site in Stockholm

8 April: Notification regarding admission and possible placement on a waiting list.

The programme starts on condition that there are a sufficient number of qualified applicants.

Application Fees and Tuition Fees

If you are a Swedish citizen or a citizen of another EU or EEA country you are not required to pay application or tuition fees. Some other groups are also exempt from the requirement to pay application and study fees.

A few years ago Sweden introduced application and tuition fees for higher education. The level of the study fees depends on which course/programme they are for, and the level is set in order to cover the actual costs of the course/programme in question. Uniarts has some possibilities of offering scholarships that cover the whole study fee or that subsidise it.

If you are required to pay an application fee, we need to have received your payment by the last date for applications. The application fee is SEK 900. If you are required to pay the application fee and we have not received your payment by the last date for applications, we will not process your application.

Read more about application and study fees, how to pay to KMH and tuition fee scholarships.

  • Teaching form:

    Master programme

  • Department:

    Classical music, Composition, conducting and music theory

  • Pace of study:

    Full time

  • Credits:


  • Admissions:

    2 Dec – 15 Jan

  • Application Code:

    To application (external web site)external link