The 2020 National Council Winners: Gabrielle Beteag, Blake Denson, Denis Vélez, Jonah Hoskins and Alexandria Shiner


The Grand Finals of the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions, also known as the Met Competition, took place last night at the Metropolitan Opera House in New York. The Competition is the most important Opera Competition in North America. The event was hosted by American soprano Lisette Oropesa, who was a winner herself of the Competition in 2005, and who is right now singing the lead role of Giuseppe Verdi's La Traviata at the Met. Motivated by a feeling of deep gratitude towards the competition that launched her singing career, Oropesa decided to donate 25,000 dollars to increase the prize money that represents another bonus for the young winners.

When the National Council asked me to host the Grand Finals of this year's edition of the Met Competition - said Oropesa - I was overwhelmed with gratitude, because this was the day that changed my life forever. I asked how much the Grand Finals prize was going to be this year. And they told me $15,000. The same amount that I had won in 2005. And I thought: you know what? This is 2020. So, in the spirit of gratitude, and to celebrate the significance of this day for these young singers, I made a donation to the National Council, so that each of the Grand Finals winners today can walk away with $20.000. By hosting the Grand Finals I had the privilege of living again the dream that started this very day for me, 15 years ago. I encourage everyone who loves opera and who has followed the competition to visit to help keep the dreams of these young singers alive.

Inspired by the surprise donation from Oropesa to the Metropolitan Opera National Council, the Semi-Finals prizes also increased from $7,500 to $10,000, making this year's prizes the highest in the Competition's history.

This year's Grand Finals concert featured 9 finalists: 4 sopranos, 2 mezzos, 2 baritones, and 1 tenor. These singers competed for one of the Grand Finals prizes by presenting 2 arias each, and the concert had selections from traditional as well as modern repertoire, accompanied by the Met Orchestra and conducted by Maestro Bertrand de Billy. While the judges deliberated there was a performance by tenor Javier Camerena.

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Dresdner Philharmonie
Dec. 10
Gstaad New Year Music Festival
Jan. 02
Opéra National de Paris
Jan. 20, 23, 25, 27, 30
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Wiener Staatsoper
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Teatro dell'Opera di Roma
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