Founding Director

Christina Farrell










Photo by TINT

Christina Farrell received her BFA in Vocal Performance from Carnegie Mellon University and her MA in Educational Theatre from New York University. As Founding Director of Opera Ignite, she has conducted classroom residencies, professional development for teachers and audience engagement workshops in collaboration with organizations including Gateway to the ArtsOpera Theater of PittsburghToledo OperaPittsburgh Symphony Orchestra, PNC Grow Up Great, Cedar Rapids Opera Theatre, Playtime PoppyAttack TheatreThe Frick Art & Historical CenterChildren’s Museum of PittsburghThree Rivers Arts FestivalWestmoreland Museum of American ArtWestmoreland Symphony OrchestraThe Point Chamber Orchestra, and Three Rivers Young Peoples Orchestra.

Christina is rostered nationally as a Master Teaching Artist with the Wolf Trap Early Learning Through the Arts Institute. She has been a featured Wolf Trap presenter across the U.S. including the 2014 Arts Education Partnership (AEP) National Forum and multiple Pittsburgh Association for the Education of Young Children (PAEYC) Conferences (2010, 2012, 2014). Through Wolf Trap’s partnership with the Singapore National Arts Council and Early Childhood Development Agency, Christina led classroom residencies, professional development for teachers, and artist trainings in Singapore. She also conducted a classroom residency in Rajkot, India for children living in poverty.

Her extensive experience as a Teaching Artist includes classroom residencies and professional development for Gateway to the Arts’ Aesthetic Education Institute and Western Pennsylvania Wolf Trap Institute for Early Learning in the Arts. She has served as a Mentor Teaching Artist and Project Manager for Gateway to the Arts’ K-12 Teaching Artist Learning Lab initiative, which focused on training Teaching Artists in best practices and in the development of arts integrated curriculum to support student achievement in the PA Common Core Standards.

Christina participated in the 2018 Lincoln Center Education Leadership Lab, led by Eric Booth. She is part of the Opera Teaching Artist Network Leadership Committee led by Opera America, and the is a member of the Pittsburgh Cultural Trust’s Education Advisory Committee. She was chosen as the 2007 Gateway to the Arts’ Hardie Artist of the Year in recognition of her outstanding commitment to arts education and is the recipient of a 2011 Fred Rogers Memorial Scholarship presented by the Academy of Television Arts and Sciences.

She has performed with Washington National Opera, Baltimore’s Opera Vivente, Opera Theater of Pittsburgh, Westmoreland Symphony Orchestra, Revival Theatre Company, and at the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts as a Finalist with the National Symphony Orchestra’s Young Soloists’ Competition. Her diverse roles include Francesca in Bridges of Madison County, Beatrice in Much Ado About Nothing, Lucy in The Telephone, Suor Isabella in Suor Isabella by Robert Xavier Rodriguez and Nellie Forbush in South Pacific.

Christina taught middle school music for six years at St. Andrew’s UM Day School in Edgewater, MD and has served on the voice faculties of The Peabody Preparatory in Baltimore and of The Levine School of Music in Washington, D.C. She is formerly the Educational Director for Prime Stage Theatre, an organization that promotes literacy skills to reluctant adolescent readers through theater-based experiences.