Houston Grand Opera Announces Opportunity for Local Street Artists

(Photo credit: Stephen Wadsworth)

Houston Grand Opera (HGO) invites Houston street artists to apply for the opportunity to showcase a large-scale work at the company’s 2024-25 season opening.

Local artists are invited to submit one image of their original street art, which may take the form of graffiti, murals, stencils, or wheat-pasted posters; a short bio; and other materials detailed in the application. The deadline for submission is June 21. The winner will be announced on July 15.

The artist selected will be given two weeks to create a custom work for the company’s new production of Verdi’s “Il trovatore,” by Stephen Wadsworth. The setting for the story is in contemporary Europe, “where the old world meets the new, castles sit amid skyscrapers, and monuments stand alongside street art.” The artist will collaborate with Wadsworth and award-winning scenic designer Charlie Corcoran to incorporate a mural-size, street art-style work into the production’s set. In addition to their work being presented on the Wortham Theater Center’s stage, the winner will receive a $3,000 honorarium. They will also be invited to attend the opera’s opening night and other special events.

Two additional artists will be chosen to create smaller-scale artworks inspired by Houston Grand Opera’s 2024-25 season. They will be awarded an honorarium of $500 and an invitation to “Il trovatore.” These works will be presented online or in a public showing.

The company’s General Director and CEO Khori Dastoor said in a press release, “The stories shared through masterpieces like Il trovatore are universal. As in Verdi’s opera, all families have ancient secrets; unresolved problems; mysteries long buried that come to the fore. With this new production, we want to emphasize that the great operas are about and for us—and that is why we want to feature a homegrown Houston artwork on the Brown stage. Lucky for HGO, there is an amazing talent pool of street artists in our great city. I cannot wait to see which one helps bring this incredible production to life.”

Houston Grand Opera collaborated with Houston gallerist Janice Bond, chief curator and art advisor for Bond Creative Advisors, as creative consultant for this initiative. In addition to assisting with the public call for entries, Bond will serve as a judge alongside Dastoor, Wadsworth, and Corcoran.

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