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Directing Fellowship

An unforgettable study abroad that combines a European cultural experience with practical training and professional development opportunities in stage direction and management under the mentorship of world-class stage directors, casting directors, and industry professionals.

Mentorship & Apprenticeship

The IPAI Directing Fellowship offers young and aspiring stage directors and managers practical training, professional development, and resume-building experiences in three intense weeks of personal instruction, guidance, and skill development. It is a unique mentorship specially tailored to the artistic and professional goals of the selected participants


A select group of two to six apprentices will be chosen based on their application and interview. Our faculty develop a curriculum of individual coaching and classes on the principles of directing, stage management, and leadership according to the needs and levels of each participant. Fellows will participate in group sessions with our team of stage directors: Bruce Earnest, Eric Gibson. Under their tutelage, Directing Fellows will create and implement stage direction for at least one musical theatre or opera scene to be showcased on one of the Gala Concerts at the end of the program. Directing Fellows are assigned either opera or musical theatre scenes to stage or choreograph and function as company stage managers for our performances. Special emphasis is placed on leadership, communication skills, rehearsal and time management, as well as directing, teaching, and acting strategies.

World-class Instruction

IPAI provides a positive and nurturing environment in which each artist can learn and develop to their full potential. Fellows receive one voice lesson per week (as requested), one-on-one mentorship, and  structured group and individual lessons. Fellows may observe any private lessons, rehearsals, or coachings with the IPAI Young Artists at the discretion of the teachers and clinicians. They are also encouraged to participate in acting and movement classes as often as possible and observe any opera, musical theatre, and company master classes and workshops which will focus on style, interpretation, audition techniques, mind/body awareness, coping with stress and nervousness, the business of performing, career building, and more! 

Participants may also perform in the Musical Theatre and/or Opera scenes.

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"Having taught overseas for several summers, I think many opera programs can vary in the overall quality of the experience. But IPAI is a fantastic organization, small enough to cater to each student's needs, with a faculty-student ratio that is enviable to other programs of its type. Still, it's large enough to attract top-flight faculty and guests drawn from both sides of the pond. Practical curriculum to ease a career into Europe (German language classes, interviews and masterclasses with working European singers and directors, and faculty currently working in their craft) abounds!


This is a fantastic program for any level of singer and I look forward to going back to not only mentor young singers, but to enrich my own artistic life!"

- Eric Gibson, International Stage Director & Educator

Language & Culture

Artists learn and practice German in daily language classes and by living in a Bavarian village for three weeks. Instruction includes the basics of functional conversational German, an introduction to German culture and etiquette, learning to slate and answer basic audition questions in German,  as well as opportunities for more advanced speakers to refine their language skills. Our artists receive musical theatre and lyric diction coaching in German. French, Italian, English, and Czech can be integrated into weekly lessons and coaching sessions as dictated by the artists' repertoire selections.

See a professional opera performance at a German Theater in Erl, Munich, or another nearby city as part of your IPAI experience! Transportation and tickets are included in the tuition. 


If they choose, Teaching & Directing Fellows are invited to perform multiple songs in any genre in the Fellowship Showcase Concert. As space allows and depending on the total number of IPAI Young Artists, Fellows may also have the option to participate in the Liederabend and Cabaret Concerts.

Career Building & Development

In addition to professional development & audition workshops, IPAI artists receive one-on-one feedback from each of our esteemed faculty throughout their IPAI residency.  Our three-week training program culminates in a next-steps conference that offers an opportunity to connect on a deeper level with our faculty, strategically plan for the "next steps" of your artistic career, gather personalized advice, and be mentored by professionals who invest in artists beyond just three weeks of training.

Outstanding students, promising young artists, and emerging young artists be offered a significant scholarship and the opportunity to join IPAI as a Fellowship Artist in the following summer. Opera Fellows have usually completed a Masters Degree or Artist Diploma, are on the cusp of starting their professional career, are already performing professionally, and/or are exploring opportunities to audition and sing in Germany or Europe. Fellowship Artists receive special attention, may be invited to auditions, or offered roles with regional companies in the US and Germany.


T U I T I O N :  

 Triple Room: $5100

Double Room: $5600

Single Room $6000

D E P O S I T : $500 

***The deposit must be received by the date on your acceptance letter (10-14 days after acceptance) in order to reserve your spot in the program and any scholarships you have been awarded. 

IPAI Germany is an all-inclusive professional training experience that includes:

  • Lodging for 21 days

  • Two meals per day (breakfast and lunch--artists are responsible for dinner and snacks)

  • Private voice lessons

  •  Individual and group repertoire coachings

  •  Master Classes and Career Training Workshops

  •  German Language Experience

  • Dance and Acting Classes

  • A Comprehensive Scenes Program

  • A Minimum of 4 Concert Performance Opportunities.

  • The cost of tickets and transportation for one excursion (the musical theatre intensive and audition casting in Hamburg, or the German opera house excursion) is also included in your tuition for IPAI Germany when available. 

Not included airfare or ground transportation to/from Kiefersfelden; ground or public transportation during the program; health or travel insurance; costs of securing a passport or visa (for non-US residents); entry, luggage, or other fees at border control; costs associated with program cancellation, flight cancellation, health care issues, or travel delays.

Tuition scholarships (typically between $500 - $3000) are awarded based on funding availability, artistry, and merit and determined by the application, video or live audition, financial need, and IPAI programming needs. Scholarships are awarded at the discretion of IPAI faculty, administration, and audition panelists. Recipients are obliged to notify IPAI of acceptance in a timely fashion and are still responsible for securing their position in the program by paying the deposit.


All participants and faculty must secure international health insurance that is valid in the country or state of residence for the duration of the program. We STRONGLY suggest securing both health and travel insurance when studying abroad. Check with your current insurance provider to inquire if they have options for temporary international travel and health insurance. Feel free to reach out to our IPAI administrative staff for assistance if you need help finding an insurance provider. It's relatively inexpensive and can be purchased online.

REFund & Participation Policy

Unfortunately, IPAI cannot issue any refunds for tuition or deposits under any circumstances at this time. This includes but is not limited to acts of violence or terrorism, sickness, disease, financial insolvency, force majeure, or any other circumstances. Due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, IPAI may be able to issue limited refunds minus the $500 deposit in the event the program is cancelled due to coronavirus restrictions. The no refund policy stands as long as a live, in-person summer program can take place.

IPAI reserves the right to withdraw a student artist from the program for behavior deemed inappropriate or unprofessional. Illegal substance use is strictly forbidden. Participants caught using illegal substances or participating in illegal activities will be sent home at their own expense and no tuition refunds will be given. Artists and faculty participate at their own risk and must provide proof of valid health insurance for the duration of the program. IPAI is not liable for a participants inability to attend or participate due to sickness, emergencies, or other unforeseen events. 

Artists engaged in the abuse of alcohol, verbal, racial, or sexual harassment in any way will be sent home immediately at their own expense.

Any artist that drops out of the program after May 15th will be responsible for 2/3 of the total tuition.

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