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NOA Dissertation Competition - 2020-22 Cycle

Call for Nominations

The National Opera Association announces its biennial competition for the outstanding dissertation on operatic subjects.

Submission Procedure

  • The competition is open to all doctoral candidates whose degrees were/will be conferred between September 1, 2020 and August 31, 2022.
  • Each entry should include one copy of the dissertation in digital (PDF) format and letters of nomination from the dissertation committee chair and the department head of the degree-granting institution.
  • A 100-word biography of the author must accompany the abstract, submitted in a separate attachment (Word or PDF). Committee members reading abstracts do not see identifying information; bios are held for use in the conference program if the dissertation is selected as a winner.
  • Judges reserve the right not to award a winner at their sole discretion.
  • Deadline for submission is October 15, 2022. The winner will be notified by November 16, 2022.


The author of the winning dissertation will be recognized and will receive a certificate of recognition at the annual National Conference of the National Opera Association. Winners are invited to submit an article emanating from the dissertation for consideration for inclusion in The Opera Journal (see submission guidelines for further information).

Application Information

There is no application fee for the competition, but entrants must be members of the National Opera Association. Non-members wishing to submit a paper can become members by applying online.

Note: Please submit your dissertation with the author's name, university information, cover page, and acknowledgements page redacted or omitted, this will be the copy that is passed along to the committee. Please check and redact any specific information identifying your university affiliation prior to submission.

Submit dissertations and letters of nomination to Caroline Schiller, Research Committee Chair at .

Recent Winners

Tania Arazi Coambs
Tania Arazi Coambs
2018-2020 Winner

With diverse musical interests in opera, musical theatre, jazz, and art song, Tania Arazi Coambs is a passionate and versatile performer, stage director, scholar, and writer. Recognized for her “searing and intense acting and singing,” Tania made her début at Chicago Symphony Orchestra Hall as the winner of the American Prize Chicago Music Theater Award. Role highlights include: Susanna (Le Nozze di Figaro), Gretel (Hansel und Gretel), Lauretta (Gianni Schicchi), Aldonza (The Man of La Mancha), and Dr. Vivian Watson in a tour of the play Preemptive. An award-winning stage director, she most recently directed Farinelli and the King. Forthcoming in 2021, she will direct “Banned” Stories, a digital theatre project generously supported by the Mellon Foundation. Tania holds a DMA in Vocal Performance and Literature with a concentration in Stage Direction from the University of Illinois.