Ava Narayan is a senior majoring in Vocal Performance with clusters in Communication and Leadership. Ava gained invaluable experience working with the San Francisco Boys Chorus at the San Francisco Opera over the summer.
This past summer, I landed a job as supervisor for the SF Boys Chorus backstage of the production of Carmen at SF Opera. I got the position through a connection with an alumni of Chapman who is currently working for the SF Boys Chorus. A typical day consisted of leading the boys onto stage level and making sure they were in the right position for their cues once they had to go on stage. I was involved in all the opera rehearsals and performance nights of Carmen. I saw big opera names such as tenor Matthew Polenzani and mezzo-soprano J’Nai Bridges as they rehearsed before the big night.
The most valuable thing I learned from my experience was seeing how similar the rehearsals at SF Opera are to my rehearsals for Opera Chapman. I really felt like I could easily go into this world well prepared because of the training that Chapman has given me. This experience also made me realize how strongly I desire to further that training so that one day I may have the chance to be on that stage. Being behind the stage of a professional opera house solidified my own career direction.
To other CoPA students who are looking for similar opportunities, I would say that it’s all about the connections you have. If you know someone who is currently working at a place that you want to work at, you have an immediate reference from someone that the organization trusts. Stay in touch with your alumni friends—they are an invaluable resource for your next career steps!
College of Performing Arts Career Resources
Chapman University and CoPA offer comprehensive personalized career services for students and alumni. CoPA students not only enjoy access to university-wide career services with Career and Professional Development but also program- and industry-specific support with their CoPA College Career Advisor.