The Norwegian National Opera is Norway's only professional opera ensemble, with 13 soloists (4 of these positions are apprentice places for young singers who have recently completed their opera training), the Norwegian National Opera Chorus and the Norwegian National Opera Children's Chorus, which have 53 and 70 members respectively. Each season, the Norwegian National Opera also engages a variety of national and international guest soloists.
The Norwegian National Opera was founded in 1959 with Kirsten Flagstad as its first Director.
The International Opera Award 2015 recently awarded its accessibility prize to The Norwegian National Opera & Ballet. The jury was utterly taken with the institution’s cultivation of openness, reflected not only in its beautifully designed house but also in the way it strives to make live opera available and appealing to new audiences on its stage.