Call For Artists

White Snake Projects is currently soliciting artists for the following projects (click on the text to learn more and apply):

“Let’s Celebrate! Living Holiday Traditions in America”

White Snake Projects, an activist opera company, is soliciting applications from composer/librettist teams to write short original operas based on their culture’s living holiday traditions as they are celebrated in the US. 

While Christmas is an important holiday tradition for many Americans, there are many other holidays celebrated in the United States today. With the beginning of the American “holiday season,” we want to hear about the celebrations that are important to you, your family, and your culture. Some examples of diverse cultural celebrations a composer/librettist team could write a story about are Hanukkah, the Spring Festival, O-Bon, Diwali, etc. The holiday you choose may take place any time of year. We emphasize that we’re looking for stories of lived experiences, not just an exposition of what the celebration is or how it originated. The holiday story must be set in America as we are showcasing how different cultural and ethnic groups celebrate their special holidays in America.


  1. No more than 20 minutes of music
  2. Ensemble: Violin, Cello, Piano
  3. Vocal Forces:  Soprano, Mezzo, Baritone
  4. Family friendly story and music
  5. Demonstrated ability to create theatrical works for voice, and instrumental ensemble. Previous experience writing for opera is not required.
  6. Willingness to work with dramaturgical and composing mentors
  7. At least three commissions will be awarded. These works should suit a diverse group of singers who will be singing all the chosen pieces and who may not necessarily represent the selected works’ ethnic or national origins. For example, a work celebrating the Day of the Dead may include non-Mexican-descended performers. If you feel that a particular holiday has to be represented by performers from a specific religious or ethnic background, please note that we will not be able to provide such specific casting.


$800 per Composer/Librettist Team

Composer/Librettist Teams, please submit the following materials in the online application:

  1. Bios of 200 words.
  2. A short statement of no more than 500 words on why you chose your particular celebration for this commission.
  3. A Treatment of the proposed story/libretto which should outline, scene by scene, the dramaturgical progression of the opera.  No more than 1,200 words, please. Composers can be their own librettist and should submit their proposal accordingly.
  4. A 500-word synopsis of the plot.
  5. Work Samples:
    • For Composers:  Two samples (hosted audio or video on sites like YouTube, Vimeo and SoundCloud) with at least one sample featuring a human voice or voices.  Neither sample should exceed 10 minutes in length.  Please include the scores.
    • For Librettists:  Two samples (written and/or audio or video) that demonstrate your story telling abilities.  These may include poetry, short stories and excerpts of plays, operas or music-theater works.  Neither sample should exceed 10 minutes or 10 pages, if written.

Application Deadline:  March 31, 2021
Adjudication:  April 2021
Notification:  April 19, 2021
Piano/Vocal Score Due: March 1, 2022
Workshop: Jun 2022
Full Score Due: September 1, 2022
Performance: December 2022

NB:  There is no guarantee that a commissioned work will be selected to be workshopped and/or performed.

Please direct any questions to [email protected] with the subject: Let’s Celebrate!

View examples of past calls.

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