Call for Entries – Artists and Designers – You’re Invited!


LA Opera is hosting a contest for currently enrolled college students in Southern California!

You are invited to submit artwork for LA Opera’s spring production of Mozart’s The Clemency of Titus! The winning submission will be featured on the cover of the show’s performance program and displayed at the home of LA Opera, the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion.

This contest is made possible with the generous support of GRoW @ Annenberg.

What will you win?

The winning submissions will receive a cash prize and recognition at the performance.

  • First Prize: $5,000
  • Second Prize: $2,000
  • Third Prize: $1,000

Winners will also be invited to attend the opening night performance of The Clemency of Titus (March 2, 2019) and the Cast Supper that follows the show.

SUBMISSION DEADLINE EXTENDED: December 17, 2018 at 11:59 p.m.

Judges: Submissions will be judged by a panel of art, opera, marketing and design experts, including Gregory Annenberg Weingarten (GRoW @ Annenberg, Annenberg Foundation); Regina Weingarten, LA Opera Board member; Tim Johnson, LA Opera Board member and Film Director at DreamWorks Animation; Christopher Koelsch, LA Opera President and CEO; Diane Bergman, LA Opera VP of Marketing and Communications; Keith Rainville, Associate Director of Marketing, Brand and Design; (Panel subject to change). The decisions of the panel are final.


We’re looking for artwork that captures the story (below) and reflects LA Opera’s production of The Clemency of Titus, a drama marked by shifting layers of morality and loyalty. The most powerful civilization in the world falls vulnerable to the machinations of power players seeking glory. Mozart’s unmistakable love for humanity shines through in his glorious and endlessly inventive music.


The Roman emperor Tito is in love with Berenice, daughter of the king of Judea. Vitellia, the former emperor’s daughter, feels that she should hold the throne herself and asks her young admirer Sesto to assassinate Tito. Though he is a close friend of the emperor, Sesto will do anything to please Vitellia, so he agrees. When Sesto’s friend Annio tells him that Tito, for reasons of state, will not marry Berenice, Vitellia becomes hopeful again and asks Sesto to put off the assassination plot.

In the imperial palace, Tito explains his philosophy of forgiveness to Publio, the captain of the guard. The emperor tells Annio and Sesto that since he has to take a Roman wife he intends to marry Servilia. Servilia enters and confesses to the emperor that she has already agreed to marry Annio. Tito thanks her for her honesty and says he will not marry her against her wishes. Vitellia, unaware that Tito has changed his mind, furiously insults Servilia and asks Sesto to kill the emperor at once. He assures her that her wish is his command. After he has left, Publio and Annio tell Vitellia that Tito has decided to choose her as his wife. Vitellia desperately tries to stop Sesto but realizes it is too late.

Sesto has launched the conspiracy and set fire to the Capitol. Full of shame, he runs into Annio, evades his questions and rushes off. Servilia appears, then Publio, and finally Vitellia. They are all searching for Sesto and believe that Tito has died. Sesto returns, looking for a place to hide. He is about to confess his crime but is silenced by Vitellia.

In the palace, Annio tells Sesto that the emperor is still alive. When Sesto confesses his assassination attempt but refuses to give any reason, Annio advises him to admit everything to Tito and hope for forgiveness. Vitellia rushes in, begging Sesto to flee, but she is too late: a fellow conspirator has betrayed him, and Publio enters with soldiers to arrest him. Sesto asks Vitellia to remember his love.

Tito struggles to understand the conspirators’ motives and doubts Sesto’s disloyalty. When it is announced that Sesto has confessed and been sentenced to death by the Senate, Annio asks Tito to consider the case compassionately. The emperor will not sign the death decree until he has had the chance to question Sesto himself. Alone with Tito, Sesto assures him that he did not want the throne for himself, but he hesitates to implicate Vitellia. Tito, not satisfied with this explanation, dismisses him. Sesto asks Tito to remember their friendship and is led off.

The emperor signs the decree, then tears it up: he cannot become a tyrant and execute a friend. Servilia and Annio beg Vitellia to help save Sesto. Vitellia realizes that she must confess her crime rather than accept the throne at the price of Sesto’s life.

In a public square, Tito is about to pronounce Sesto’s sentence, when Vitellia appears and admits that she alone is responsible for the assassination attempt. The bewildered emperor explains that his intention was to forgive Sesto anyway. He finally decides to pardon all the conspirators. The Roman people praise Tito for his kindness and ask the gods to grant him a long life.

Your artwork should be created with the following in mind:

  • All submissions should be original art/illustrations.
  • The winning designer should be able to submit a layered file (.psd, eps, .ai) of the winning design.
  • Respect copyright. DO NOT submit copyrighted work, including images or promotional material from the show (e.g. no use of images from posters, advertisements or LA Opera’s website).
  • Do NOT use stock images or clip art.
  • Do NOT use photographs.
  • No profanity, vulgar or hate language
  • No nudity or explicit sexual language, images or graphics
  • Do NOT use the LA Opera logo
  • The artwork does NOT need to include the opera’s title.


  • Size: 8.375’ x 11.125” at a MINIMUM 300 dpi (but higher res/larger files are STRONGLY recommended, note that 0.125” bleed matter on each edge will be cut off
  • Final trim size: 8.125” h x 10.875” vertical
  • Maximum file size for submission: 2mb, screen resolution, flattened .jpg.
  • NOTE:  The winning designer must be able to submit a layered file (.psd, eps, .ai) of the winning design.
A preliminary set design of LA Opera's upcoming production of La Clemenza di Tito by director Thaddeus Strassberger

A preliminary set design of LA Opera’s upcoming production of La Clemenza di Tito by director Thaddeus Strassberger


Once set into the layout of our program, the top 2 inches and bottom 2 inches will have print over the illustration, so your work should not have complicated material that would make our text illegible. The top and bottom 2 inch areas should not contain anything “important” in the illustration, since it would be partially covered.



Winners will be asked to submit artwork as follows:

  • Minimum resolution – 600dpi for non-vector art
  • Accepted file formats: .jpg, jpeg, .tif, .tiff, .eps, .png
  • .TIFF (or .TIF) formats should be flattened
  • .EPS formats must have all type converted to vector paths (traced or outlined)
  • You must be able to submit a layered file (.psd, eps, .ai) of the winning design.
  • RGB colorspace only
  • Max file size is 60mb

Eligibility: Students must be enrolled (full-time or part-time) in a Southern California college or university at the time of the submission deadline (December 17 at 11:59 p.m.). You will be asked to provide proof of enrollment through an unofficial transcript or photo/copy of your student ID.

Employees of LA Opera and their immediate families are not eligible.

Copyright: The artist retains all copyrights to their artwork without exception.

Non-exclusive Permissions: By entering this art competition, you are granting LA Opera a non-exclusive perpetual license to reproduce images of your artwork in any context, including but not limited to the following: on the cover of our program, on our promotional video montages, on our blog and on our website in the marketing of future similar art competitions to the general public.Artwork will not be used for any other purpose than that which is stated here. All winning entries may be displayed on LA Opera’s website and social media channels. Each entry becomes part of the public, historical / archival LA Opera program.

Prize Payments: Cash prizes will be awarded at the Cast Supper following the opening night performance. In the event the winner cannot attend, a check will be mailed to the winner within 14 days of the opening night performance.

Taxes: Winners shall be solely responsible for all federal, state, and local taxes.


Is there a fee to enter the contest? No – contest submissions are free. There is no fee to enter.

Can I submit more than one entry? Yes – you can submit more than one piece, but winners can only win one of the prizes, so we recommend you send us your favorite.

Do I have to include the singers/principal cast? No – there’s no need to include the cast members. When our teams design, it’s often before we are ready to confirm the cast. Get creative…we want to see how you solve the challenge.

Can I observe a rehearsal to get a better sense of it? No – unfortunately, rehearsals for the show don’t begin until long after our production timelines. For each show, our own artists have to conceive artwork before they see the staged piece. They receive the brief, much like the details outlined in the contest blog and have to conceive their artwork from there.

Can I create artwork as a painting or does it have to be a digital illustration? Yes – You can create your art in any medium you want to use. However, your piece must be submitted as a digital piece and comply with the specs outlined above. And digital illustrations are welcome too.

Do you have to be a student to submit an entry? Yes – this contest is only for students enrolled in a program at the time of the entry deadline.

Have additional questions? Ask below or send an e-mail to

Click here to learn more about The Clemency of Titus.

LA Opera is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization dedicated to the greater good.
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2 Responses to Call for Entries – Artists and Designers – You’re Invited!

  1. Austin Mueck says:


    I am very interested in participating in this contest. Are we allowed to have ground plans of the space that the show is to be performed in?


  2. Stacy Brightman says:

    Hi Austin! We are thrilled that you are interested in participating, and good luck! When you have moment, please give us a call at 213-972-3157 or email to and we will do our best to answer your question. You are asking about the set design for the opera?

    All our best, the LA Opera Education and Community Engagement Team

Comments are closed.