Call for Papers

Opera and Popular Culture After 1900

Date: February 7–8, 2020                                    

Note: The October 1 deadline for submissions has now passed.

From opera stars in silent films to opera scenes in video games, and from operas based on Zorro to Rigoletto reimagined as Planet of the Apes, opera and popular culture have been intertwined since 1900 in creative, complex, and sometimes controversial ways. This two-day conference hosted at Texas Christian University (Fort Worth, TX) will interrogate these connections from a variety of perspectives, providing an opportunity to open new dialogues on this rich topic.

The conference will correspond with the premiere of the comic opera Yeltsin in Texas! (music by Evan Mack, libretto by Joshua McGuire), co-commissioned by TCU and Opera in the Heights. A conference keynote address will be provided by Dr. Naomi André, author of Black Opera: History, Power, Engagement (2018).

The program committee welcomes proposals for 20-minute presentations on any subject related to the conference topic. Possible themes might include, but are not limited to:


  • Opera in radio, film, television, or video games

  • Opera in popular theatre circuits

  • Opera in popular press and literature

  • The influence of popular music on opera (and vice versa)

  • Connections between opera and musical theatre

  • The impact of popular culture on contemporary opera composition or stagings

Proposals are invited as individual papers, themed panels, or roundtable discussions. Individual proposals should include a 250-word abstract. If you are proposing a themed panel or roundtable, please submit a 250-word topic proposal (in addition to individual abstracts in the case of themed panels).


Program Committee
Gina Bombola, Texas Christian University
William Gibbons, Texas Christian University
Jeongwon Joe, University of Cincinnati – College-Conservatory of Music
Melanie Lowe, Vanderbilt University
Kristen Turner, North Carolina State University