The American Opera Project

The Next Stage of Your Life

aka AOP   |   Brooklyn, NY   |  www.aopopera.org

Mission

Brooklyn’s The American Opera Project (AOP) has been at the forefront of the contemporary opera movement for over thirty years through its commissioning, developing and producing of opera and music theatre projects; its training programs for students, emerging composers and librettists; and the organization’s community engagement. In 2019, General Director Matt Gray and Artistic Director Mila Henry assumed leadership, changing the organization’s name from American Opera Projects to The American Opera Project, signifying a shift from being a collection of works towards fostering a new vision for American Opera as a forward-thinking and unending artistic experiment that melds artistic genres and recognizes the operatic story in every life.

Ruling year info

1981

General Director

Mr. Matt Gray

Main address

138 South Oxford Street, Suite 3B

Brooklyn, NY 11217 USA

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Formerly known as

Zelda Artists Project

Renamed American Opera Projects

Renamed The American Opera Project

EIN

13-3081486

NTEE code info

Opera (A6A)

Music (A68)

Arts Education/Schools (A25)

IRS filing requirement

This organization is required to file an IRS Form 990 or 990-EZ.

Sign in or create an account to view Form(s) 990 for 2019, 2018 and 2017.
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Communication

Programs and results

What we aim to solve

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Our programs

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

"First Chance" Opera Development

For over thirty years, AOP's "First Chance" series has provided artistic and financial support to creators of new operas and music-theatre with the goal of preparing their projects for a fully-produced world premiere - either at AOP or with AOP partners. Projects selected for First Chance development are given:

- strategic planning to identify the funding, resources, and partnerships that will bring the project to fruition;
- artistic planning to create a timeline and assemble the artists needed to realize the vision of the creators;
- a safe and vibrant home for risk and experimentation through creative workshops. AOP workshops range from the earliest brainstorming to libretto readings with professional actors to music workshops with professional singers and instrumentalists;
- honest, helpful, and respectful feedback at each stage of development.

AOP is recognized for its cross-genre experimentation in works such as the dance chamber opera Hagoromo starring Wendy Whelan (Davis/Pelsue, BAM, 2015) and Darkling (Weisman/Rabinowitz, 2006), an interdisciplinary work combining poetry, music and projection; stories of African-American history including The Summer King (Sonenberg/Nester/Campbell, Pittsburgh Opera, 2017) and Harriet Tubman: When I Crossed That Line to Freedom (Okoye, Irondale, 2014); and numerous groundbreaking works on LGBTQ themes like Paul’s Case (Spears/Walat, UrbanArias, 2015), Patience & Sarah (Kimper/Persons, Lincoln Center Festival, 1998), the first opera about a lesbian relationship, and As One (Kaminsky/Campbell/Reed, BAM, 2014), the first opera about a transgender person.

Recent AOP world premieres include Savage Winter (Pittsburgh Opera, 2018), The Echo Drift (PROTOTYPE Festival 2018), The Blind (co-production with Lincoln Center Festival, 2013) and As One, a chamber opera developed and premiered by AOP in 2014 at the Brooklyn Academy of Music that has since become the most produced opera written in the 21st Century with over two dozen separate productions.

Operas that were developed by AOP and premiered with partner organizations include The Summer King at Pittsburgh Opera (2017) and Michigan Opera Theatre (2018), Lucy and Independence Eve at Urban Arias (2017), The Scarlet Ibis at PROTOTYPE Festival (2015), Paul's Case at Urban Arias (2013) and PROTOTYPE Festival and Pittsburgh Opera (2014), Séance on a Wet Afternoon at New York City Opera (2011), Before Night Falls at Fort Worth Opera (2010) and Heart of Darkness at London's Royal Opera House (2011) and Opera Parallèle (2015).

Population(s) Served

Where we work

Financials

The American Opera Project
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Operations

The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.

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Connect with nonprofit leaders

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  • Analyze a variety of pre-calculated financial metrics
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  • Compare nonprofit financials to similar organizations

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The American Opera Project

Board of directors
as of 2/24/2020
SOURCE: Self-reported by organization
Board chair

Ms. Coco Lazaroff

Advisory Board-Metropolitan Opera

Norman Ryan

Schott Music Corp. & European American Music Distributors

Charles Jarden

American Opera Projects

Anna Rabinowitz

Poetry Society of America

Anthony Costanzo

Metropolitan Opera and multiple opera houses

J. David Jackson

Metropolitan Opera, Glyndebourne Festival and multiple other opera companies

William Jones

Stage Manager's Association

Sarah Faux

Multiple opera companies; Chair of Jr. Members of Metropolitan Opera Club; Board member of Southampton Cultural Center

Mark Kalow

Soquel Group; Board member of Tannery Arts Center, Santa Cruz, CA and the Anna Mahler Foundation

Board leadership practices

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

GuideStar worked with BoardSource, the national leader in nonprofit board leadership and governance, to create this section.

  • Board orientation and education
    Does the board conduct a formal orientation for new board members and require all board members to sign a written agreement regarding their roles, responsibilities, and expectations? No
  • CEO oversight
    Has the board conducted a formal, written assessment of the chief executive within the past year ? No
  • Ethics and transparency
    Have the board and senior staff reviewed the conflict-of-interest policy and completed and signed disclosure statements in the past year? No
  • Board composition
    Does the board ensure an inclusive board member recruitment process that results in diversity of thought and leadership? No
  • Board performance
    Has the board conducted a formal, written self-assessment of its performance within the past three years? No