Mentorship program for performance designers from the Global South

9th November 2022

Opera for Peace is particularly proud to announce our collaboration with Scenography Today & UNITA for Future to give opportunities to emerging Opera Stage Designers. This is a one of a kind project, the first-ever International Mentorship Program for Emerging Set Designers providing them with one-to-one professional support from three of the top set designers in opera, to broaden their network, skills, and opportunities, fostering excellence and diversity in the world of opera and the performing arts.


Three emerging set designers from the global south (see Requisites) will be selected for this opportunity. The 2023 mentors are Paolo Fantin, Gary McCann, and Christian Schmidt.


Participant Benefits- One-to-one quarterly remote meetings with respective mentor- In-person participation in a production at one of the opera houses where the mentor will stage a show. Financial, travel, and accommodation support will be provided- Additional masterclasses in related topics are planned.


Requisites- Having previous experience as a set designer for pre-professional or professional productions and/or being a current member or alumnus of a young artist program- Born in a country in the Middle East, Africa, Asia, or Latin America- Proficient in English (Italian is desirable)- Confirmed availability to participate in the final events in Europe or the United States- Ability to share program content on social media. There is NO age limit to apply!


How to apply- Please send an email to: indicating “MP23” in the email subject (no other text is needed). You will automatically receive an email with the link to the application form to fill in.


Documents to submit – An online portfolio of your work with details on the production(s) and venue(s) (link to file sharing platform)- Résumé with your contact details – Cover letter describing your introduction to opera and why you are uniquely qualified for this opportunity.


Selection process – Applications must be submitted by 30 November 2022. They will be evaluated against the criteria by a panel and submitted to the mentors for final selection. Applicants selected for one of the three available places in the program will receive a confirmation via email by January 16, 2023.


Program description- UNITA for Future ambassadors & set designers Christian Schmidt, Paolo Fantin, and Gary McCann will mentor, for ca. 18 months, one emerging set designer each. At the end of the program, each mentee is invited to an opera production staged by their mentor as a backstage observer and a guest to the premiere’s events.


Under the program, the three mentees will receive masterclasses in arts marketing and management, hosted by UNITA for Future and Opera for Peace’s advisors.




Anna Lluna | Assistant to the General Director, Opera for Peace


Mentorship Program Team | Scenography Today