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Laura Jobin-Acosta ’20 MM Earns Inaugural OPERA America Residency

Congratulations to Laura Jobin-Acosta ’20 MM, a composer recently named a recipient of the first-ever IDEA Opera Residencies program by OPERA America.

OPERA America announced the inaugural participants of the IDEA Opera Residencies (Inclusion, Diversity, Equity, and Access), a new initiative that provides New York City-based composers and librettists of color an opportunity to explore opera as an expressive medium.

Jobin-Acosta is a motivated and passionate composer who realized her compositional skills by attending the 2017 Walden Creative Musicians Retreat, where she wrote a piece that was premiered by the Mivos Quartet.

At Purchase she studied with Professor of Music and Head of Composition Laura Kaminsky and Kamala Sankaram, lecturer in music. While at Purchase, she was commissioned to compose The Seven Last Words of Christ by Calvary-St. George Episcopal Church in Manhattan.

“My private instructors Laura Kaminsky and Kamala Sankaram were so patient, kind, and they met me where I was in my studies,” says Jobin-Acosta. “They also knew when and how to push me to the next level, whatever it took, which is so necessary. There was little room for self-doubt because I always felt their belief in me.”

Jobin-Acosta’s unique multicultural upbringing and singing background are reflected in her music, which can be described as beautiful, weird, and full of dialogue. She has significant local and international singing experience that extends to Munich, Vienna, and Israel, and she regularly performs new music in New York City, where she resides.

The Purchase Experience

The composer overcame any doubt about pursuing graduate studies at Purchase once she arrived. “Coming from a completely different discipline and having taken so many years off since getting my undergraduate degree, I feared I was going to feel like an outsider,” she says. “I was wrong, because every one of my composer colleagues were so unique, that I fit in right away. The one thing they all shared was mutual love for composing music and supporting the heck out of each other.”

She credits Purchase with helping define her path. “My journey at Purchase led me from having some idea of what I wanted to pursue, to being a composer with a residency. All in all it goes to show that even someone like me; untraditional, weird, brown; has an actual chance to succeed as a composer.”

More About IDEA

Each artist will receive a full-year residency at OPERA America’s National Opera Center and a total package of $22,500 including direct grants for the exploration of opera as an artistic medium, career and promotional support, and facility and recording services. In addition, they will receive mentorship from field leaders, introductions to the field through Opera America Magazine and OPERA America’s digital and social platforms, and participation at national convenings like the Opera Conference and New Works Forum.