The gender diverse opera

10.03.2021 - 11.04.2021

Sort/Hvid wants to expand the spectrum for music theatre. Therefore, we give room to the project GENDER DIVERSE OPERA which seeks to broaden the understanding of gender and voice and thereby create a new framework for the diverse opera scene.


Who are we looking for?

We are looking for a broad selection of singers and voice-performers who are interested in challenging cultural norms. Everyone is welcome to apply, however we are especially looking for performers with lived LGBTQIA+ experiences. We encourage performers of all ages, from all religious and ethnic backgrounds, with different body types, and norm challenging bodies to apply. We want to give voice to and create a platform for performers, who contribute to a broad representation within the LGBTQIA+ spectrum.

During the workshop, we aim to set and create a framework based on safer space practices, allowing everyone to express wishes and boundaries in their individual and collective work.

Every performer receives a fee of 12.000 DKK for their participation in the 5-day workshop. Travel costs will also be covered, and subsidies are given for sleeping accommodation in Copenhagen.

Time and place

May 17th – 21st 2021 from 9h00-18h00 at Sort/Hvid in Kødbyen in Copenhagen.


GENDER DIVERSE OPERA is a performing arts project that investigates how we can establish a new and norm-critical foundation to create music theatre from.

The workshop provides a chance to explore the voice in new ways and work with voice techniques that enables us to use the full potential of the voice. How does our voice feel in our bodies? How do different bodies influence how we use and understand our voice? What is gender in the voice and how do we feel and experience a gendered voice? How can we create a staged room to help us experiment and develop our voices, as well as the way we experience and use them?

During the workshop, we will explore the potentials and limitations of the voice and work with techniques that enable us to shape the sound of the voice and the expression when singing. The participating performers will both have the opportunity to work in individual sessions with a voice coach, and collectively with group exercises, focusing on performative collaboration.


During the workshop, we will work on creating a foundation for a new opera culture, suggesting a contemporary continuation of the genre and its aesthetics. We wish to create a structural renewal of a normative performance culture full of archetypes, dogmas, and fixed expressions. During the workshop, we will explore the different voices’ expressive and performative potentials, without being limited by stereotypes and predetermined roles within gendered/non-gendered expressions.

The intention is to create a starting point for a new framework of expression in theatre music and text. Following the workshop, the two initiators will begin working on a contemporary norm-critical opera, based on the experiences from the workshop. In the finished piece, all participants on and off stage will consciously work on incorporating this new norm-critical music and visual language.

About us

The two initiators and artistic leaders of the project, composer Josefine Opsahl (she/her) and conductor Rose Heiberg (she/her and them/they), both have a background in classical music. They dream of changing the culture in and around classical opera and will be co-creators of a sustainable and broad representation in the genre in the future.

The two voice coaches, Line Nyvang Warming og Sebastian Svegaard, will lead the process during the workshop.

Line (she/her) is a voice speech therapist, rhythmic singer, vocal teacher and choir leader. She works with all aspects of the voice and specializes in voice transformation, primarily focusing on trans feminine people.

Sebastian (he/him) is cand.mag. in Musicology and PhD student in Media Studies. He is active in LGBT+ Denmark as former vice chairperson, as well as facilitator for support groups for young transgender people. He does private workshops, centering song and voice training for other transgender people, primarily men and non-binary people whose voice has been or is in transition.

The participants will end the workshop with an internal showing at Sort/Hvid, giving everyone at the theatre an insight into the process and conversation about how we ensure a broader representation going forward, as well as initiating cultural change within the genre.

Application process

To participate, you must send in a video presentation in which you present yourself and your artistic practices along with a CV. Furthermore, you must send us a video in which you sing/perform for max. 5 minutes. For example, a clip from a live performance or a video recorded for the occasion. In both cases it should be a clear expression of you and your artistic practice.

Please, share both videos and links (for example Vimeo/YouTube) here.

Deadline is April 11th at 23.59

You will receive a response by April 17th at the latest.

The applications will be accessed by the initiators and voice coaches to assemble the right group of performers for the workshop. All applicants will receive a written response in return. Applicants will potentially be invited for a live audition.