Mary Jacobs Smith Singer of the Year Competition 


This year's competition will be held on Saturday and Sunday, March 7 and 8, 2020, at First Presbyterian Church, Shreveport. From an applicant pool of 150+, 26 young opera singers from across the world will be invited to compete for the title of Mary Jacobs Smith Singer of the Year. The prizes have been increased from previous years, with the grand prize now at $10,000!  The total prizes awarded total over $20,000


To apply for the 2020 Mary Jacobs Smith Singer of the Year competition, please click the link below:

If you need additional information, please email our General & Artistic Director, Steve Aiken  at

After two days of competition in 2029, tenor Duke Kim of Torrance, California, walked away with the grand prize and title, 2019 Singer of the Year. 

For a complete list of winners and photographs, click here.


Mary N. Smith, sponsor of the Mary Jacobs Smith Award, with  2019 Singer of the Year Duke Kim

2019 Singer of the Year Finalists

back row, l-r,: Emmett O'Hanlon, Brandon Russell, Reginald Smith, Jr., WooYoung Yoon

middle, l-r: Flora Wall, Felicia Moore, Chelsea Miller, Leia Lensing

kneeling: Anthony Ciaramitaro, Duke Kim

About Singer of the Year

Annually, Shreveport Opera hosts The Mary Jacobs Smith Singer of the Year Competition, Shreveport's only national singing competition. Opera singers from across the country travel to Shreveport seeking the title of Mary Jacobs Smith Singer of the Year, as well as the financial award that accompanies the title. Over the years, competitors have been seen and heard on some of the most famous opera houses in the world, including the Metropolitan Opera, the Chicago Lyric, Houston Grand Opera and San Francisco Opera.


Roughly 150 singers go through the preliminary application process of the competition.  After careful review and adjudication of each and every applicant,  which is based on submitted recordings from each applicant, between 20-16 singers are selected to participate in the semifinals in Shreveport. Judges, who are invited to participate from opera companies across the country, hear all of the remaining applicants on Saturday and determine the finalists. Those finalists then compete in the Finalists' Competition and Concert on Sunday.

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Shreveport Opera  •  6969 Fern Loop, Suite 206, Shreveport, Louisiana 71105  •  (318) 227-9503