About the Company

Thompson Street Opera Company was founded in 2011, based in a tiny studio apartment on Thompson Street in Ann Arbor, Michigan.  The company name serves as a reminder of our origins, and highlights the company's belief that incredible art can come from the humblest of places. 

From 2013 through 2016, we produced a summer festival of operas in Louisville, Kentucky each May and June. In 2016, we relocated to Chicago IL, and have since been successfully producing a regular season of works from September to April.

Our Mission

The mission of Thompson Street Opera Company is threefold:

  • To produce high-quality performances of new operatic works, particularly those that bring non-traditional audiences to opera

  • To provide opportunities to emerging artists in the field of opera

  • To inspire performers to be advocates for contemporary opera   

We aim to not only involve performers in the creative process as artistic collaborators, but also to foster an intensely friendly work environment, where performers are supported emotionally as well as artistically. We provide housing for out-of-town artists at no cost, and serve free common meals whenever possible. As of 2014, we also offer small stipends and intend to continue growing the company to provide competitive wages to all artists.

Our uniqueness in the Chicago "storefront" scene comes not only from the specificity of our programming, but also from its content and prolificacy. By exclusively producing works by living composers, we are dedicated to showing the potential of the art form through the diverse voices of our time. Since our founding we have featured six works by female composers, four more with female librettists, and another five by composers under the age of 25. In addition, we are currently the only Chicago storefront company mounting three productions per year!