What you'll find below is a comprehensive list of everything you could possibly need to pack for an opera engagement away from home (from the obvious to the not so obvious!)
Of course, everyone is different and this list will expand and contract depending on the length of your engagement, but regardless, sometimes it's nice to start from a point of reference.
Your opera score...both in your bag and in your brain :)
A binder of your hit repertoire
Party pieces (in case you need something fun for a donor event)
Comfortable clothes that will allow you to contort your body into whatever position the director may have in mind. Unless you are a fan of showcasing your butt cleavage… (you do you,) make sure your bottoms are ready for crouching, bending, crawling etc. This way you can worry about the music and not your pants.
1 or 2 (or 3 or 4 ;) ) cocktail outfits that make you feel fabulous
1 nice outfit for the Sitzprobe (I usually dress in a black ensemble for Sitzprobe- a jacket is recommended for gentlemen)
1 audition outfit (you never know what opportunities may arise!)
Character shoes or basic rehearsal shoes (most companies have a rule of closed toe shoes in all rehearsals)
Rehearsal skirt (if your character wears a skirt) *Depending on the company, this may be provided.
Underwear and Socks ...everyone needs 'em
Shapewear (if you like!)
undergarments that match your skin tone (the costume department will love you)
Formal wear (check with the company to see if this will be needed)
Jewelry and Accessories
Statement necklaces (they can turn a simple cocktail dress into a completely different look!)
Earrings, Bracelets, etc.
Cocktail Purse or clutch
*Inside: music, pencils, Sticky notes for adding staging into your score, water bottle, lozenges (if you have a dry day!), mints (if you have a kissing scene...be a good colleague), character shoes (if not provided,) Hair ties.
Unless your headed to Central City, CO …you will usually have immediate access to a chain pharmacy of our choice. Lighten up your luggage. Set aside a budgeted amount for toiletries and buy once you arrive!
Any specialty products you prefer for your hair and skin
Hair Staightener, curling iron
Stock up on items that you deem essential for your health. That way you never need to worry about your health or your voice! *Don't lump this into the toiletry category of "Buy it when you get there," It's best not to leave your health to chance!
(ie. Flonase, Alkalol, Antacid)
The “on the road” lifestyle of an opera singer can lead to homesickness. Find one or two things that make you feel at home no matter where you are. A coffee mug, a photo album, a framed photo for your nightstand, a journal, etc.
A blanket or throw to personalize your home away from home.
Little Comforts and Extras
Your favorite brand of coffee or tea, if it isn't available at all grocery stores
French Press (for the coffee addicts)
Spices, if you're a foodie
Humidifier (some people can take it or leave it- depends on your preference)
Earplugs (you may share a space with a colleague who keeps different hours)
Room Spray or candles (if the company allows)
And last, but not least , your fabulous self :)