Opera Residencies in Schools- Teaching Artist | Lyric Opera of Chicago

Submitted by ttuckett on Wed, 10/03/2018 - 2:21pm

Status: Part-Time, Seasonal Contract

Reports to: Director of Learning Programs

Lyric Unlimited is seeking Teaching Artists with professional vocal and teaching experience for school-based residencies in the 2018-19 school year. Employment will begin as early as November 2018.

Program Overview

Lyric Unlimited collaborates with teachers to create custom residencies that fit the unique circumstances and characteristics of each school. Teachers and teaching artists work together to plan and deliver activities and projects in which students study music, drama, and other arts disciplines while thinking creatively and expressing themselves through performance. Most programs culminate in a live presentation of student work and some may include student trips to the Lyric Opera House. For each residency, the partnership between teacher and Lyric teaching artist is fortified through a professional development workshop. Residencies consist of as few as 4 to as many as 30 sessions and may last from 4 weeks to an entire school year. All residency activities occur during regular school-day hours of operation.

Elementary Opera Residency

Grade Levels: 1-5

Program Duration: 12 or 18 sessions (typically once a week)

Session Length: one full class period (50-60 minutes) for each participating class

This multi-disciplinary program empowers students in grades 1-5 to create and perform an original opera that integrates curricular content objectives with arts learning in music, theater, and movement.

Explore Opera Residency

Grade Levels: 6–12

Program Duration: 4 sessions (typically once a week) plus 1 performance field trip to Lyric

Session Length: one full class period (50-60 minutes) for each participating class

Explore Operaengages students in grades 6–12 in an in-depth study of a selected work. Students gain a rich understanding of the piece, its history and context, and important themes. Working in collaboration with the classroom teacher, the Teaching Artist guides students through a creative process to reinterpret select operatic scenes with their own words and music.

High School Choir Residency

Grade Levels: 9–12

Duration: 30 sessions (typically once a week) plus 1 performance field trip

Session Length: one full class period (45–60 minutes) for each participating class

This collaborative program is designed to support and enrich the music learning objectives of high school choir teachers by providing regular, year-round assistance from a Lyric professional teaching artist in the classroom.


  • Create and deliver a customized curriculum that achieves Lyric’s Residency learning goals.
  • Develop learning activities in one or more of the following arts disciplines: music, drama, movement, and creative writing.
  • Create and deliver customized classroom lesson plans for each session.
  • Collaborate with classroom teachers to tailor the instructional unit and develop strong partnerships.
  • Communicate regularly with teachers throughout the program to plan and assess program effectiveness. 
  • Produce a fully-staged final presentation to display student work.   
  • Collaborate with piano accompanists to rehearse musical selections before the final presentation.
  • Participate in professional development workshops for teaching artists and classroom teachers.
  • Continually assess the progress of program participants through formal and informal assessment strategies.
  • Attend final dress rehearsals at the Lyric Opera House with participating schools (if applicable).
  • Communicate regularly with Lyric Unlimited staff.


  • This position functions primarily on school campuses, with occasional events and meetings at the Lyric Opera administrative offices at the Civic Opera Building.


  • Bachelors degree in vocal performance, music education, or related field
  • Knowledge of and passion for opera
  • Professional vocal performance experiences in opera or musical theater
  • Experience working with groups of children in diverse educational settings
  • Experience developing and delivering lesson and/or rehearsal plans
  • Ability to solve problems with creativity and flexibility
  • Excellent oral and written communication skills
  • Comfortable communicating with school teachers and administrators
  • Comfortable teaching in any Chicago neighborhood
  • Experience with Chicago Public Schools (CPS) a plus
  • Must have access to a car for travel to/from schools


  • Teaching Artists are contracted as part-time seasonal employees of Lyric Opera of Chicago
  • Pay rates are hourly and vary based on the type of program being delivered

Application Procedures

  • Interested applicants should submit a cover letter and resume for both performance and teaching experience to jobs@lyricopera.org.
  • Potential candidates will be asked to perform a live vocal audition and may be asked to submit supplementary materials.  
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