The Kennedy Center

Washington National Opera Domingo-Cafritz Young Artist


The Domingo-Cafritz Young Artist Program is unique in guiding young singers, coach/accompanists, conductors, and stage directors on the verge of international careers.  The Program provides intensive study with renowned vocal and drama coaches, and offers voice lessons, language classes; career guidance and master classes from staff and guest artists. The Young Artists also have the opportunity to perform and cover roles on the main stage of Washington National Opera.

The Domingo-Cafritz Young Artists have performed at Opéra de Monte-Carlo, the White House, the Kennedy Center, the US Senate, Strathmore Hall, The Smithsonian Institution, The Wilson Center, the Inter-American Development Bank, the Mexican Cultural Institute, and numerous embassies. They have also performed in concert with Maestro Domingo in Beijing.

Each season, the Young Artists sing a fully staged performance at the Kennedy Center Opera House. In 2009, they presented Verdi’s La Traviata, conducted by Plácido Domingo and in 2010 they presented Mozart's Le Nozze di Figaro on May 6, 2010.

Graduates of the Program have gone on to successful careers including performances at the Metropolitan Opera, New York City Opera, Santa Fe Opera, the National Symphony Orchestra, Weill Recital Hall, Los Angeles Opera, Canterbury Opera in New Zealand, Staatsoper Berlin, Teatro Real in Madrid, and Opéra de Monte-Carlo, among others.

Watch Past Performances

Video 10/10/2017: Washington National Opera Domingo-Cafritz Young Artist Program 2017–2018

Join us for the inaugural concert of the Washington National Opera Domingo-Cafritz Young Artist Program 2017–2018 recital series. Soprano Leah Hawkins, mezzo-soprano Allegra De Vita, and tenor Frederick Ballentine from WNO’s Domingo-Cafritz Young Artist Program present a recital of art song and concert works, exploring the relationship between text and music, poet and composer, pianist and voice. This recital is an intimate window into the many facets of an opera singer’s artistry, showcasing the talents of some of the finest young singers in the country, with piano accompaniment and introductions by Robert Ainsley, Program Director.

Video 9/5/2017: WNO Preview: Aida and Alcina

Enjoy a free preview of musical highlights from Washington National Opera’s two blockbuster fall productions of Aida (September 9–23) and Alcina (November 4–19) featuring members of WNO’s Domingo-Cafritz Young Artist Program and other artists from the productions.

Video 9/16/2016: Washington National Opera Preview: The Marriage of Figaro

The Domingo-Cafritz Young Artists sing excerpts from Mozart’s sparkling comedy, The Marriage of Figaro, as a preview of Washington National Opera’s upcoming production.

Video 3/18/2016: Domingo-Cafritz Young Artists

As WNO gears up for performances of Richard Wagner's Ring Cycle, the Domingo-Cafritz Young Artists present opera scenes inspired by myths, legends, and fantasy. The performance will be in the original languages with projected titles on the screens above the stage.

Video 12/8/2015: Washington National Opera Preview: Hansel and Gretel

Members of Washington National Opera’s Domingo-Cafritz Young Artist Program offer a preview performance of its holiday family opera, Hansel and Gretel, along with a selection of holiday pieces.

Video 10/29/2015: Washington National Opera: Appomattox Preview

Members of the WNO Domingo-Cafritz Young Artist Program perform songs and readings from both the Civil War and Civil Rights Era, and an excerpt from the acclaimed opera to be performed in the Opera House November 14–22.

Video 9/12/2015: WNO Preview

Washington National Opera previews the company’s upcoming production of Bizet’s Carmen with a performance by members of the Domingo-Cafritz Young Artist Program.

Video 5/20/2015: Washington National Opera 2015–2016 Season Preview

Members of WNO’s Domingo-Cafritz Young Artist Program and other special guests perform songs to preview the upcoming season.

Video 5/8/2015: Washington National Opera Preview: Cinderella

Members of WNO’s Domingo-Cafritz Young Artist Program perform selections from the upcoming production of Rossini’s Cinderella with Ken Weiss as host.

Video 12/12/2014: Target Family Night: Washington National Opera preview of The Little Prince

WNO gives audiences a preview of the holiday family opera The Little Prince, “a magical opera” based on the original storybook written by Antoine de Saint-Exupéry. Relive its joy and wonder in Rachel Portman’s “enchanting opera…satisfying to child and adult alike” (Financial Times).

Washington National Opera Domingo-Cafritz Young Artist Program