Opera Academy

Kapellsberg Music Department at Härnösands Folkhogskola Summer Opera Academy

Explore your operatic potential this summer in beautiful Härnösand, Sweden!   In cooperation with Kashu-do Studios, Härnösands Folkhogskola offers a Summer Opera Academy that will provide the ever-developing singer an opportunity to hone in the many skill-sets required of an operatic artist in an environment that is as supportive and genial as it is focused and challenging.

The program will provide daily classes in physical fitness and mental focus, vocal technique, musical coaching, scenic interpretation, language and diction, body-alignment/muscular balancing and ensemble singing. Additionally each singer will have the opportunity to perform in daily master classes and take part in a performance of arias and scenes at the end of the program as well as a final concert with the faculty.  Pianists will work closely with singers and with our experienced piano faculty to develop their skills as collaborative pianists.

Kashu-do (歌手道): The Way of the Singer is a philosophy of vocal artistry developed by Dr. Jean- Ronald LaFond. In short, it is a process that opens the developing singer to the awareness of the many elements that must be mastered in order to achieve true competence as a vocal artist, with particular emphasis on opera. 

Dates: July 8-20, 2014

Application and Registration: To apply, please proceed to the application form by clicking the button below (application fee: 220 SEK). Once accepted, students will receive the link to register and pay for the course.  Application Deadline is 1 June 2014 or until all spots are filled (40 singers and 6-9 pianists--As of 14 March 2014 close to half of the spots have been filled.  Earlier application is better!

Video:  The application form asks for a link to a video of the applicant peforming.  This helps the faculty to have an idea of your skills and to prepare for your instruction.

  • Singers:  Provide a video of yourself performing two pieces including one operatic aria of your choice in original language and key. Second piece maybe another aria or a song, preferably in your own language.
  • Pianists: Provide a video of yourself playing a solo piece that shows the level of your pianistic skills and of you accompanying a singer in a song or aria (It is understood that pianists will have good sight-reading skills).

    Room: All participants will reside in student apartments (double occupancy 2000 SEK, or single occupancy 2500 for 12 nights) equipped with kitchen.

    Board: Students have the option of buying their own food and cooking in their apartments or may opt for the campus food service (3 meals and two snack sessions [Fika] daily for 3700 SEK)

    Fees: The 12-day Academy costs 7000 SEK. The total cost to students (excluding travel) including PayPal processing fee and room and board will be 12.920 SEK (€1.457 or $2,002) or 13.420 SEK for single occupancy (€1.513 or $2,079).  Costs without board will be 9.220 SEK (€1.010 or $1,396) and 9.720 SEK (€1.065 or $1,472) respectively.

    Partial Sessions

    The Summer Opera Academy offers two half sessions (July 8-13 and July 14 to 19) for a tuition fee of 4200 SEK.  Room and board will be available on campus for a price to be determined by Härnösands Folkhögskolan.  Participants will enjoy daily lessons and coachings and will participate in a recital on July 13 and 19 respectively.  For further details email Dr. Jean-Ronald LaFond.


    What can I say about these amazing few days? Together with a group of incredible individuals, I reconnected with my passion for singing and rediscovered the joy that made me fall in love with opera in the first place. By focusing on the Self as a whole, the voice naturally falls into place. I was so excited and thrilled to work with my colleagues each day, and I treasure each and every one of them. This was an experience I'll never forget! (Chelsea Feltman, aspiring professional coloratura soprano)

    The Härnösand Summer Opera Academy is a safe haven for growth and exploration equipped with a world-class team that is invested in the technical and artistic evolution of each participant.  What is remarkable is that you have a group of very talented pedagogues who are ready to work: no ego, no agenda. Just great singing.  (Zachary Wilder, professional tenor)


    Härnösand Summer Opera Academy has been a totally fantastic experience for me.  I have developed in ways I did not know were possible: some as a singer, some as a person.  To get to work with such high level teachers has allowed me to fell immensely fortunate and privileged.  That the students were all so extremely talented made the process totally amazing for an amateur like me.  It was a very emotional journey, as singing itself is, and the support that we received from each other and from the team of teachers was truly unbelievable.  I believe we all developed as singers and human beings in ways that none of us could have accomplished alone.  The skills that each member of the teaching team brought to the experience were formidable.  Imagine getting to work with such unbelievably clever, capable and even compassionate people!  In the beginning it felt difficult to be comfortable among such professional level singers (who took the course to advance their own skills), but when we got to know eachother, which occured very quickly, it became relatively easy.  The acceptance and intimacy between students and teachers made it such that everyone dared to throw himself into unknown terrain in order to push himself much further away from his comfort zone than he ever thought possible.  It made it such that students and teachers alike grew wonderfully together.  I am forever thankful this experience: one of the greatest experiences of my life!  (Pontus von Schoenberg, amateur singer)


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