Last year, Ms. Nichols gave OperaIdols the following advice for prospective applicants:
In summary, she advises that the minute you feel ready with your repertoire, get out there and start competing. This will get you the feedback that you need to develop your talent, as it is important to know where you stand against others and a competition is an ideal place for this.
Additionally, her feeling was that the audience should have been packed with students who aspire to sing on the Met Opera stage (as soloists). So students: please know that your presence is not just welcome but highly encouraged by this judge!