Opera America Launches the North American Opera Journal, an online scholarly journal about opera in the Western Hemisphere.

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North American Opera Journal, from OPERA America. Click to learn more and subscribe.
North American Opera Journal, from OPERA America. Click to learn more and subscribe.

I am quite excited to announce the publication of the inaugual issue of the North American Opera Journal (NAOJ), not least for the purely egocentric reason that it contains an article of my own about concert opera in America, above all, its musical and dramative function in our opera-going lives. It also contains “Porgy and Bess as a Human-Interest Opera” by James Parakilas, “The Operas of Elie Siegmeister (1909-1991)” by Leonard J. Lehrman, “Leontyne Price: An Interview” by Peter Dickinson. These should all be of compelling interest, and they all reach to the core of opera in America — a powerful tradition which is severely underestmated, even here on these shores.

For details, I can do no better than Opera America’s own announcement:

New York, NY—OPERA America, the national service organization for opera, proudly announces the launch of a new online scholarly publication: the North American Opera Journal. The Journal is a new peer-reviewed, semi-annual online journal for scholarship about North American opera that features high-quality research with multimedia elements and is the first to support scholarly work specific to the field of opera in the United States, Canada and Mexico.

In addition to covering all aspects of opera production in North America, topics will center on composition and performance histories of North American operas. The Journal will primarily appeal to readers with interests in musicological and historical issues, as well as singers and other professionals involved in opera production.

“OPERA America is committed to serving all aspects of our field, from productions to fundraising to education and beyond,” stated President & CEO Marc A. Scorca. “By establishing the North American Opera Journal, we demonstrate our firm commitment to furthering the study of our art form in North America, an area on which no other publication focuses.”

The inaugural issue of the North American Opera Journal features the following articles: “Porgy and Bess as a Human-Interest Opera” by James Parakilas, “The Operas of Elie Siegmeister (1909-1991)” by Leonard J. Lehrman, “Concert Opera Today in the Northeastern United States: a Survey and a Balance Sheet” by Michael Miller and “Leontyne Price: An Interview” by Peter Dickinson.

The North American Opera Journal is now available online at www.operaamerica.org/naoj.

OPERA America will publish two issues of the Journal per year in an online format. The Journal is free of charge to OPERA America members; subscriptions are available to non-member individuals for $35 per year and $125 per year for institutions. Through January 1, 2011, samples of the Journal will be available to the general public at www.operaamerica.org/naoj.

Submissions to the North American Opera Journal are accepted on a continuing basis. Guidelines for contributors are available at www.operaamerica.org/content/pubs/journal.aspx.

Members of the media seeking access to the Journal’s content should contact Patricia K. Johnson at PKJohnson@operaamerica.org.

North American Opera Journal: Volume I, Issue 1 (November 2010)


Melanie Feilotter, Evan Wildstein and Alexa B. Antopol, OPERA America

Consulting Editor

Michael Pisani, Vassar College

Advisory Committee

Caryl Clark, University of Toronto

Sean David Cooper, Bowling Green State University

Ryan P. Jones, University of Wisconsin

Elise K. Kirk, author, American Opera

Ralph P. Locke, Eastman School of Music

Michael McKelvey, St. Edward’s University

Howard Pollack, University of Houston

Katherine K. Preston, The College of William and Mary

Pierre Ruhe, music critic

About OPERA America

OPERA America leads and serves the entire opera community, supporting the creation, presentation and enjoyment of opera.

Artistic services help opera companies and creative and performing artists to improve the quality of productions and increase the creation and presentation of North American works.

Information, technical, and administrative services to opera companies reflect the need for strengthened leadership among staff, trustees and volunteers.

Education, audience development and community services are designed to enhance all forms of opera appreciation.

Founded in 1970, OPERA America’s worldwide membership network includes nearly 200 Company Members, 300 Associate and Business Members, 2,000 Individual Members and more than 18,000 subscribers to the association’s electronic news service.

OPERA America’s long tradition of supporting and nurturing the creation and development of new works led to the formation of The Opera Fund, a growing endowment which allows OPERA America to make a direct impact on the ongoing creation and presentation of new opera and music-theater works. Since its inception, OPERA America has made grants of nearly $11 million to assist companies with the expenses associated with the creation and development of new works.

2010 marks OPERA America’s 40th year of service to the opera community and President/CEO Marc A. Scorca’s 20th year of leading the organization.

Patricia Kiernan Johnson | Marketing & Media Manager
OPERA America


Michael Miller, Editor and Publisher of New York Arts and The Berkshire Review, an International Journal for the Arts, was trained as a classicist and art historian at Harvard and Oxford, worked in the art world for many years as a curator and dealer, and contributed reviews and articles to Bostonia, Master Drawings, Drawing, Threshold, and North American Opera Journal, as well as numerous articles for scholarly and popular periodicals. He has taught courses in classics, the English language, and art history at Oberlin, Rutgers, New York University, the New School, and Williams. Currently, when he is not at work on The Berkshire Review and New York Arts, he writes fiction, pursues photography, and publishes scholarly work. In 2011 he contributed an introductory essay to Leonard Freed: The Italians / exh. cat. Io Amo L'Italia, exhibition at Le Stelline, Milan, Il Museo di Roma a Trastevere, etc. and wrote the revised the section on American opera houses in The Grove Dictionary of American Music. He is currently at work on a libretto for a new opera by Lewis Spratlan, Midi, an adaptation of Euripides' Medea set in the French West Indies, ca. 1930.

2 thoughts on “Opera America Launches the North American Opera Journal, an online scholarly journal about opera in the Western Hemisphere.

  1. Dear editor,

    I would appreciate your thoughts (however brief) on Debussy’s ‘Pelleas et Melisande’.

    Would you agree with me that ‘Pelleas et Melisande’ is the finest, most ravishing and most addictive of all operas ?

    And does it mystify you that it has never had the impact nor the popularity of Mozart, Verdi, Wagner and Strauss ?

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