DETROIT, Nov. 18, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- Wayne S. Brown, CEO and President of Michigan Opera Theatre, today announced the appointment of Maestro Stephen Lord as Principal Conductor, a newly created position at MOT. The appointment is effective immediately and will continue through the 2018-19 season. Lord has been a frequent conductor at MOT since 2004 and last led the orchestra in the March, 2016, production of Macbeth.
Lord will have a lead role in all artistic matters at MOT including programming, casting, and auditions and will work collaboratively with Brown and David DiChiera, the company's founder and Artistic Director, through the end of the season when DiChiera will assume the position of Artistic Director Emeritus.
Lord is currently Music Director of the Opera Theatre of St. Louis, a position he will continue to hold during his tenure at MOT. He is an internationally regarded conductor who has led operas at the English National Opera, the Canadian Opera Company, the Seoul Arts Center and at opera companies in New York, Washington, D.C., Chicago, San Francisco, Santa Fe and a variety of other U.S. cities. He has been a frequent guest conductor at Michigan Opera Theatre and is popular with audiences and with the orchestra.
"We're delighted that Stephen has agreed to join us and lead us artistically through David DiChiera's transition to an Emeritus position," said Wayne Brown. The company has been conducting a search for a successor to Dr. DiChiera for the past year.
"Our Search Committee continues to review and interview a number of recognized and qualified candidates and they have recommended that the search be continued," Brown said. "We don't want to be rushed in this process. We want to achieve artistic integrity and alignment with the goals and strategies we've set for the future and having Stephen aboard will give us the time we need to do that."
"I'm thrilled to accept this position with Michigan Opera Theatre," said Lord. "This is a company I've known and respected for a long time and I've always looked forward to my return visits. Under David and Wayne's leadership MOT has become one of the premier companies not only in the U.S. but in the world and I welcome the opportunity to continue and grow the traditions that have been started here."
MOT's search for a new Artistic Director will continue during Lord's tenure. Lord will conduct MOT's production of "Girl of the Golden West" in the spring of 2017 and will be involved in the planning of future seasons for the company. Lord, who is known for his remarkable record of spotting and nurturing young talent, will work closely with MOT's recently created Studio Artists Program, a DiChiera initiative that identifies and develops new talent in opera.
"Stephen and I have worked together often over the years and, like the rest of the opera world, I have great admiration for his abilities and his creativity. His innate talent and his knowledge and love of opera will be of enormous benefit to MOT," said DiChiera. "I couldn't ask for a better partner to work with during my transition."
SOURCE Michigan Opera Theatre