by tdoadmin


Tuesday, April 30, 2013
Contact: Suzanne Calvin (214.443.1014/
Or Megan Meister (214.443.1071/



Our New Music Director




Selected by General Director and CEO Keith Cerny

To become only the third person to serve in that role

In the 56-year history of the Dallas Opera


Maestro Villaume to Conduct the Upcoming Season-Opener

CARMEN, October 25through November 10, 2013

            DALLAS, APRIL 30, 2013 – The Dallas Opera is thrilled to announce the appointment of a distinguished new music director—only the third person ever to be named to that position in the 56-year history of the company.

The official announcement was made by Dallas Opera General Director and CEO Keith Cerny at a morning media event, as he introduced critically acclaimed French-born conductor Emmanuel Villaume.

“Over the past year, I have actively sought input from a wide variety of sources, both inside and outside Dallas,” explained Mr. Cerny.  “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 has appeared in the world’s most important and prestigious opera houses. These include engagements with the Metropolitan Opera (Madama Butterfly, Samson et Dalila, and Carmen); Royal Opera House, Covent Garden (Les contes d’Hoffmann and La rondine); Lyric Opera of Chicago (Samson et Dalila, Manon, and The Merry Widow); Washington’s National Opera (Werther, La rondine, Norma, Le Cid, Les 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’s Pelléas 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.”

After opening Dallas Opera’s 2013-2014 Season (“By Love Transformed”), Maestro Villaume returns to Royal Opera House, Covent Garden for performances of Massenet’s Manon and to Venice’s La fenice for performances of L’africaine. Maestro Villaume maintains a busy schedule of symphonic performances including concerts with the Slovak Philharmonic Orchestra and the Slovenian Philharmonic.

Recent and upcoming highlights of Maestro Villaume’s 2012-2013 operatic season include performances of La bohème with Lyric Opera of Chicago; appearances on the podium of Munich’s Bavarian State Opera in Les contes d’Hoffmann; and a return to Santa Fe Opera in La Grande-Duchesse de Gérolstein, starring mezzo-soprano Susan Graham, who recently starred in the Dallas Opera’s 25th Anniversary production of Dominick Argento’s The Aspern Papers.

In 2012, Maestro Villaume toured throughout Europe in concert performances of Tchaikovsky’s Iolanta, starring soprano Anna Netrebko, with performances in Berlin, Vienna, Amsterdam, Paris, and several other European capitals of music. He also led Washington National Opera in performances of Werther as well as last summer’s well-received Santa Fe Opera production of Georges Bizet’s Les pêcheurs de perles (“The Pearl Fishers”).

Maestro Villaume remains in demand for symphonic engagements around the world, and he has appeared  with the Danish National Orchestra, St. Petersburg Symphony, Spoleto Festival USA, the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra (Stockholm), and the Ruhrtriennale Festival in Northwest Germany.

His schedule includes additional prestigious future engagements not yet announced to the public.


General Director and CEO Keith 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.”


Maestro Villaume has attracted the favorable notice of critics throughout his career.

John von Rhein of The Chicago Tribune wrote, “A master of Gallic style in the pit, Emmanuel Villaume has the fine Lyric Orchestra speaking fluent Offenbach, within flowing lines, vivacious tempos and airy textures that sparkle with flair and sensuality.”

Meche Kroop of The Opera Insider praised Villaume’s ability to “bring it all together with a display of precision and drama that led the Metropolitan Opera Orchestra to its customary peak of performance.”

Heidi Waleson of The Wall Street Journal, reviewing Santa Fe Opera’s The Pearl Fishers, noted: “Emmanuel Villaume led an idiomatic performance, bringing out the delicacy and sensuality of this lovely, underappreciated score.”

Pavel Unger of Kultura Pravda wrote, “The opening concert of the Bratislava Festival was successful beyond expectation…the Slovak Philharmonic and its principal conductor, Emmanuel Villaume, have set the bar very high.”

Critic Ivan Marton added, “Villaume’s conducting is passionate, precise and clear—and he is a talented interpreter of (Beethoven) as well.  He knew exactly what he wanted and was successful in achieving it.”

Lawrence A. Johnson of Chicago Classical Review stated that Villaume “conducted the Lyric Opera Orchestra with immense vigor and panache,” while a critic for Diapason Magazine in France praised the conductor’s “elegiac gentleness (and) warmth.”

Opera News critic Simon Williams saluted the conductor for conjuring “rich, idiomatic playing from the orchestra (that) did not hesitate to highlight the borrowings, mainly from Gounod and Wagner, that show how Bizet explored contemporaneous opera music to find his own voice.”

Samuel Wigutow of Chicago Critic in his recent review of Lyric Opera’s Bohème wrote, “Credit must also go to conductor Emmanuel Villaume, who drew exceptionally polished, vibrant, and nuanced playing from the orchestra to match the stage action.  He showed himself again to be among Lyric’s finest conducting talent, with a gift for keeping the orchestra on its toes as well as true musical inspiration.”

Maestro Villaume will officially be known as the Mrs. Eugene McDermott Music Director in Honor of Graeme Jenkins.  For additional information, go to


Subscriptions for the Dallas Opera’s 2013-2014 Season will go on sale to the general public on May 13th, starting at just $75 for all four mainstage productions.

Single tickets for the “By Love Transformed” Season will go on sale July 1 (starting at a low price of $19) through the Dallas Opera Ticket Services Office at 214.443.1000 or online at www.dallasopera.orgFlex Subscriptions will go on sale at that time, as well.

Student Rush best-available tickets are available for $25 or $50 (one per valid Student I.D.) at the Winspear box office, ninety minutes prior to each performance.






For high-resolution, digital photographs suitable for print

To arrange an interview with Maestro Villaume

Or for additional information

Please contact Suzanne Calvin, Manager/Director Media & PR

214.443.1014 or


The Dallas Opera’s 2013-2014 “By Love Transformed” Season

Is Coming to an Opera House Near You





Ticket Information for the 2013-2014 Dallas Opera Season


            All performances are in the Margot and Bill Winspear Opera House at the AT&T Performing Arts Center.  Subscriptions go on sale to the general public on May 13, starting at just $75.  Single Tickets starting at $19 and Flex Subscriptions will go on sale July 1.  Family performances are $5 (subs $12 for three family performances) and will go on sale July 1.  For more information, contact The Dallas Opera Ticket Services Office at 214.443.1000 or visit us online at



The Dallas Opera celebrates its Fifty-SeventhInternational Season in the Margot and Bill Winspear Opera House at the AT&T Performing Arts Center in the Dallas Arts District. Evening performances will begin at 7:30 p.m. and Sunday matinees will begin at 2:00 p.m. unless otherwise stated.  English translations will be projected above the stage at every performance and assistance is available for the hearing impaired.

CARMEN by Georges Bizet
October 25, 27(m), 30, November 2, 8 & 10(m), 2013
The most irresistible bad girl in opera—How can you possibly say “non”?
An opera in four acts first performed in Paris on March 3, 1875
Text by Henri Meilhac and Ludovic Halévy based on the novella by Prosper Mérimée
Time: 19th century
Place: Seville, Spain
Conductor: Emmanuel Villaume
Stage Director: Bliss Hebert
Scenic Design: Jean-Pierre Ponnelle
Costume Design: Werner Iverke
Lighting Design: Thomas Hase
Wig & make-up Design: David Zimmerman
Chorus Master: Alexander Rom
Children’s Chorus Master: Melinda Cotten
Starring: Clémentine Margaine**(Carmen), Brandon Jovanovich (Don José Oct. 25, 27, 30), Bruno Ribeiro* (Don José Nov. 2, 8, 10), Mary Dunleavy (Micaëla), Dwayne Croft (Escamillo), Danielle Pastin*(Frasquita), Audrey Babcock*(Mercédès), Kyle Albertson*(Zuniga), Steven LaBrie (Le Dancaïre), Victor Ryan Robertson (Remendado), John David Boehr*(Moralès).

February 12, 14, 15 & 16(m), 2014
Science fiction and poignant family drama combine in a major regional premiere!
An opera in one act first performed in Monte Carlo, Monaco at the Salle Garnier on September X, 2010.
Text by Robert Pinsky, based on a story by Pinsky and Randy Weiner
Time: Unknown time in the future
Place: Earth, the home of billionaire Simon Powers
Conductor: Nicole Paiement
Stage Director: Diane Paulus*
Associate Director: Andrew Eggert*
Scenic Design: Alex McDowell*
Costume Design: David Woolard*
Lighting Design: Don Holder
Choreography: Karole Armitage*
Wig & make-up Design: David Zimmerman
Starring: Robert Orth (Simon Powers/Robot One), Joélle Harvey (Miranda/Robot Four), Patricia Risley(Evvy/Robot Three), Hal Cazalet*(Nicholas/Robot Two), Frank Kelley*(The United Way), David Kravitz*(The United Nations), Tom McNichols*(The Administration).

DIE TOTE STADT (“THE DEAD CITY”) by Erich Wolfgang Korngold
March 21, 23(m), 26, 29 and April 6(m), 2014
The Hitchcock-like tale of one man’s dark obsession with the woman he loved and lost.
An opera in three acts first performed in Hamburg & Cologne, Germany on December 4, 1920
Text by Erich Wolfgang Korngold and Paul Schott based on a novel by Georges Rodenbach, Bruges la morte
Time: End of the 19th century
Place: The city of Bruges in northwestern Belgium
Conductor: Sebastian Lang-Lessing*
Stage Director: Mikael Melbye
Scenic Design: Mikael Melbye*
Costume Design: Dierdre Clancy*
Video Design: Wendall Harrington*
Lighting Design: Mark McCullough
Wig & make-up Design: David Zimmerman
Choreography: Matthew Ferraro*
Chorus Master: Alexander Rom
Starring: Anne Petersen**(Marietta) , Jay Hunter Morris (Paul), Morgan Smith (Fritz), Weston Hurt (Frank), Katherine Tier*(Brigitta), Andrew Bidlack (Albert), Jan Lund**(Victorin), Jennifer Chung (Juliette), Angela Turner Wilson (Lucienne).

THE BARBER OF SEVILLE by Gioachino Rossini
March 28, 30(m), April 2, 5, 11 & 13(m), 2014
Figaro, a scheming barber and jack-of-all-trades plots to release a headstrong girl from her gilded cage!
An opera in two acts first performed in Rome on February 20, 1816
Text by Pierre-Augustin de Beaumarchais, from his comedy Le Barbier de Séville
Time: 18th century
Place: Seville, Spain
Conductor: Giuliano Carella*
Stage Director: Herb Kellner
Original Production: John Copley
Scenic Design: John Conklin
Costume Design: Michael Stennet
Lighting Design: TBD
Wig & make-up Design: David Zimmerman
Chorus Master: Alexander Rom
Starring: Nathan Gunn (Figaro), Isabel Leonard*(Rosina), Alek Shrader*(Count Almaviva), Donato DiStefano (Dr. Bartolo), Burak Bilgili*(Don Basilio), Nathan De’Shon Myers (Fiorello), Christian Teague*(Ambrogio).

Jack and the Beanstalk: October 26, 2013 and April 5, 2014
Family Concerts: November 3, 2013 and February 1, 2014
The Elixir of Love: November 9, 2013 and April 12, 2014

* Dallas Opera Debut
** American Debut


The Dallas Opera is supported, in part, by funds from:  City of Dallas, Office of Cultural Affairs; TACA; the Texas Commission on the Arts and The National Endowment for the Arts (NEA)American Airlines is the official airline of The Dallas Opera.  Lexus is the official vehicle of The Dallas Opera.  Advertising support from The Dallas Morning News.  A special thanks to Mrs. William W. Winspear and the Elsa von Seggern Foundation for their continuing support.