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Production Apprentice Program

Arizona Opera’s Production Apprentice Program bridges the divide between academic studies and a professional career, helping young theater technicians learn the skills and gain the experience necessary to begin their careers with confidence. Founded in 2015 with the help of Dr. Paul Symchych, the program began with just two apprentices, each working in the costume shop.

As the state’s only professional opera company, Arizona Opera provides a unique opportunity for apprentices to engage in all aspects of what it takes to produce quality performances: lighting design, projections, props, costumes, wigs and makeup, and stage management. In addition to being paid hourly, our distinctive program provides comprehensive, cross-discipline training, networking opportunities, masterclasses, and essential portfolio reviews in which the apprentices’ work is compiled and put to the test.

Interested in applying for the Production Apprentice Program? Click below to submit your application.


Meet the 2019/20 Season Production Apprentices


Travis Baldwin 

Lighting Design Apprentice (2nd Year)

Hometown: Oklahoma City, Oklahoma
Education: BFA in Theatre Design & Production from Oklahoma City University
Experience: Lighting Design for Arizona Opera, Oklahoma City Ballet, Oklahoma City Repertory Theatre, Lake Dillon Theatre Company in Silverthorne, Colorado, and Koresh Dance Company in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania



Luci Burdick

Stage Management Apprentice (3rd Year)

Hometown: Urbana, Ohio
Education: B.F.A. in Stage Management from the Conservatory of Theatre Arts at Webster University
Experience: Assistant Stage Manager at Arizona Opera, Assistant Stage Management Intern at Opera Theatre of Saint Louis, Production Assistant at Repertory Theatre of St. Louis, Stage Manager at Thunder Bay Theater in Alpena, Michigan, Stage Manager at Conservatory of Theatre Arts at Webster University



Cody Grasher

Costume Apprentice (1st Year)

Hometown: Grain Valley, Missouri
Education: BA in Theatre with an emphasis in Design and Technical from the University of Missouri
Experience: Worked as a stitcher/dresser for the Larry D. Clark Summer Repertory Theatre at Mizzou, worked as a costume studio technician for the University of Missouri's Theatre Department, worked as a stitcher/dresser intern for the Utah Festival Opera and Musical Theatre, and returned as a stitcher for another season at the Utah Festival Opera



Emma Jackson

Costume Apprentice (2nd Year)

Co-Sponsored by: Dr. Paul S. Symchych

Hometown: Lake Hopatcong, New Jersey
Education: Studied Fashion and Costume Design at Kent State University
Experience: Ran wardrobe for productions at Kent State University, head costume designer for an independent film at Kent State University, Costume design internship in Los Angeles, California.



Mattaea Reeves

Costume Apprentice

Sponsored in part by Nancy Foster

Hometown: Cave Creek, Arizona
Education: : Northern Arizona University, Bachelor of Science, Theatre Major, Design and Technology Emphasis, Arts and Cultural Management Minor.
Experience: Ran wardrobe at Northern Arizona University and Scottsdale Center for the Performing Arts. Designed and built costumes at Northern Arizona University, Pinnacle Creative Arts Studio, Northwest Christian School, and Desert Foothills Theater. Award recipient from: Northern Arizona University, Desert Foothills Theater, and the National Youth Arts.

Shyla Bonham

Stage Management Apprentice (2nd Year)

Hometown: Mesa, Arizona
EducationBA in Theater Design and production from Arizona State University
Experience: Stage manager and Assistant stage manager at Tacoma Little theater, Assistant Stage Manager at Arizona Opera, Stage manager at Now and Then theater company, Assistant stage Manager at Southwest Shakespeare, Stage manager and Assistant stage manager at East Valley Children's Theater, Stage Manager at Binary Theater Company, Stage Manager and Assistant Stage Manager at Arizona State University.


Interested in applying for the Production Apprentice Program? Click below to submit your application.

For more information about the Production Apprentice Program, please contact Luke Matlock at or by phone at 602.903.5719.

Special Thanks to Our Supporters:

Paul Symchych, M.D.

MUSE: Inspired Urban Living

Sermin Boysan and Jeffrey Clark

Rex and Arlyn Brewster

Ann Davies

Nancy Foster

David and Iris Lacey

Sherry and George* Middlemas

Robert and Shoshana Tancer

The Hao and Michelle Wang Foundation

Steve and Jeanne Winograd

If you are passionate about continuing the traditions of opera for the next generation, this is your opportunity! For more information about supporting this program, or to inquire about sponsoring an apprentice, contact Logan Marshall at 602.218.7331 or