Mobile nav

2018 WC Regional Conference

2018 West Central Regional Conference (EVENT HAS PASSED)

September 29, 2018 at Tabor College (Hillsboro, KS)

Copeland Woodruff
Copeland Woodruff

On Saturday, September 29, 2018, the West Central Region of NOA will hold its first regional conference at Tabor College in Hillsboro, Kansas. The conference session topics will range from those of interest for seasoned opera directors, singers, and pianists, to sessions that are considered "student-friendly," and introduce students to a wide range of ideas with which they may not have opportunity to engage in their current programs of study. In addition to sessions scheduled throughout the day, Copeland Woodruff will serve as clinician and artist-in-residence for the day's opera scenes showcase, in which students will be paired with a director and collaborative pianist and given the day to put their (pre-assigned) scene together for an afternoon performance. Directors will have the opportunity to have their scene coached by Mr. Woodruff after the morning's rehearsals.

For this conference, the West Central region of NOA will combine with the Kansas chapter of MTNA for their collaborative pianist state-wide event, which will give MTNA members a chance to work with student singers in the opera scenes showcase, and give NOA members a chance to fully engage with our pianist colleagues and learn more about how to work towards the most beneficial relationship between singers, directors, teachers, pianists, and coaches. 

Registration Open Now

Registration for this conference is just $50 for NOA members, $70 for non-members, and $20 for students.

See Complete Schedule 

Question by e-mail to:
Dr. Jen Stephenson, NOA West Central Conference host:


About the Clinician

Copeland Woodruff, Director of Opera Studies at the Lawrence Conservatory of Lawrence University, was mostly recently co-director of opera activities at the University of Memphis where he taught and directed for six years. He has been on the directing and production staffs of the New York City Opera, Santa Fe Opera, Chautauqua Opera, Michigan Opera Theatre, Yale Opera, Atlantic Coast Opera Festival (NJ), and Opera North (Philadelphia and New Hampshire). Mr. Woodruff has been on the faculties of the Oberlin Conservatory, Academy of Vocal Arts, Temple University, Universität Bamberg, the Harrower Opera Workshop, La musica lirica (Italy) and Festival of International Opera of the Americas (Brazil). He has been a visiting faculty member of The Juilliard School, teaching the acting curriculum and serving as private coach to master’s students in the Vocal Arts Division. He directed Aaron Copland’s The Tender Land for Juilliard’s Focus Festival 2010.

Mr. Woodruff has directed more than 90 opera productions, including the 2013 world premiere of Raise the Red Lantern at the Tianqiao Theatre in Beijing. Since 2006, he has earned five first-place National Opera Association Best Opera Production Awards, as well as first place in the undergraduate scenes competition of the same organization.

He has enjoyed an extended relationship with Boston Conservatory’s Ensemble-in-Residence, Guerilla Opera. He has directed three productions for the company, one of which (Rojahn’s Heart of a Dog) earned Second Prize in the American Prize for Opera Performance competition, professional division. Heart of a Dog was a favorite at the Opera America convention in May 2011 and its sold-out, two-week run in Boston garnered such reviews as: “…a brilliant stroke of staging” and “…stunning” (Boston Musical Intelligencer); “brilliantly physicalized in this extraordinarily well-acted production” and “a prime and rare example of opera properly compounded with theater” (Boston Lowbrow).

Woodruff is dedicated to expanding the role of opera in the communities it serves, including disenfranchised and marginalized populations. His training in devised theatre exposes casts, both vocalists and instrumentalists, to improvisation and to techniques building a narrative from research material from the surrounding populace. He, also, is a vanguard in recital reimagining, bringing a personal approach to the concert stage.

Mr. Woodruff holds a Bachelor of Music degree and Master of Music degree in Vocal Performance from the University of South Carolina and a Master of Science in Opera Stage Direction from Indiana University. He is a proud member of the American Guild of Musical Artists (AGMA) and Actors' Equity Association (AEA).


Tabor College is located in the scenic hills of rural central Kansas, just 50 miles north of Wichita. With easy access to Eisenhower International Airport, there are several hotels conveniently located in the city of Newton, located between Wichita and the college. Those traveling from the north and/or west might choose to stay in the nearby city of McPherson, Kansas, a short 20-minute drive from Tabor College.

Tabor CollegeTabor College