General Director and CEO Keith Cerny announced Frenchman Emmanuel Villaume as the 56 year old organization’s 3rd Music Director at a press conference this morning.

Regarding his choice, Mr. Cerny explained,

“Over the past year, I have actively sought input from a wide variety of sources, both inside and outside Dallas. I was delighted to see the intense level of interest in this position from candidates of the highest caliber, many of whom have extraordinarily busy careers conducting at the world’s leading opera houses.”

“Having carefully weighed all input, spoken with a number of these candidates, and traveled extensively to watch contenders for the position in both rehearsal and performance, I made the decision to appoint French-born conductor Emmanuel Villaume as Music Director of The Dallas Opera.”

Maestro Emmanuel Villaume will open the Dallas Opera’s 2013-2014 season, “By Love Transformed”, conducting Georges Bizet’s Carmen, October 25 – November 10, 2013.

The critically acclaimed Villaume has appeared in the world’s most important and prestigious opera houses. These include engagements with the Metropolitan Opera (Madama ButterflySamson et Dalila, andCarmen); Royal Opera House, Covent Garden (Les contes d’Hoffmann and La rondine); Lyric Opera of Chicago (Samson et DalilaManon, and The Merry Widow); Washington’s National Opera (Werther, La rondine,NormaLe CidLes contes d’Hoffmann and Lucia di Lammermoor); San Francisco Opera (Madama Butterfly and Werther); Los Angeles Opera (La rondine and La Grande-Duchesse de Gérolstein); Santa Fe Opera (Les pêcheurs du perles and Carmen); Opéra de Paris (Rigoletto); Teatro la fenice in Venice (Thaïs and Il crociato); Deutsche Oper Berlin (Tosca); Madrid’s Teatro Real (Les contes d’Hoffmann and Werther); and Debussey’sPelléas et Mélisande at Teatro Colón in Buenos Aires, Argentina.

“I am honored to be selected as Music Director of the Dallas Opera and to be a part of such a talented artistic community,” said Emmanuel Villaume. “The Winspear Opera House is one of the most beautiful performing arts venues in the world, and I am excited to be working with the superb orchestra and dedicated staff of the Dallas Opera.  I look forward to helping create even more brilliant performances with this impassioned opera company.”

Mr. Cerny told journalists gathered for today’s announcement:

“The Music Director’s role encompasses three vital elements.  One, of course, is to conduct mainstage performances for the company, at least two productions per year.  The second is to work closely with me and members of the company’s artistic staff, on artistic planning, auditions, and other major musical decisions.  The third is to spend time in the North Texas community – meeting donors and community leaders, and helping the Dallas Opera to achieve the highest possible levels of artistry and impact.”

“Maestro Villaume will work in a multi-faceted capacity during the production season, but our new Music Director will also spend time outside the regular season spreading the word about TDO throughout the Metroplex.

“I also believe that Emmanuel Villaume will prove an excellent ambassador for the company while attending to his many national and international conducting engagements,” Cerny added, “and will help the Dallas Opera to continue to attract the best singers, directors and designers at work in our field today.”


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