The Dallas Opera
More than half a century of artistic excellence and community engagement has earned The Dallas Opera a major role in shaping the national/international cultural reputation of Dallas. TDO has also made—and continues to make—an important contribution to the economic impact of the performing arts in North Texas.
The Dallas Opera has presented many international stars in their American debuts, including Dame Joan Sutherland, Jon Vickers and Plácido Domingo, as well as director-designer Franco Zeffirelli.
A champion of new work, The Dallas Opera has presented the American premieres of five operas and additional world premieres. Most recently, the company commissioned composer Jake Heggie and librettist Gene Scheer to create a highly-critically-acclaimed new opera based on Herman Melville’s 19th-century novel, Moby-Dick (April 2010), and a new song cycle, A Question of Light (premiered in April 2011), inspired by artworks on display at the Dallas Museum of Art. TDO has also commissioned exciting new operas for upcoming seasons from Jake Heggie and Tony Award-winning librettist Terrence McNally, Great Scott, for mezzo-soprano Joyce DiDonato, as well as from British composer Joby Talbot and librettist Gene Scheer, who will collaborate on a one-act, Everest, for the 2014-2015 season.
The company’s commitment to outstanding opera of every era is reflected in General Director and CEO Keith Cerny’s decision to launch a dedicated chamber series with an all-new production of Peter Maxwell Davies’ haunting 1980 masterpiece, The Lighthouse. Conducted by Nicole Paiement, only the second woman to take the podium at TDO, and staged by Dallas Theater Center Artistic Director Kevin Moriarty in his opera debut, the production sparked major buzz and critical accolades.
Our renewed commitment to children and families resulted in the creation of several new education programs; a new production of Georges Bizet’s charming Doctor Miracle, newly translated into English and staged in partnership with Dallas Children’s Theater; and family- and education-friendly productions of John Davies’ Jack and the Beanstalk and Donizetti’s The Elixir of Love. Altogether, our education initiatives touched the lives of more than 27,000 in the 2012-2013 season alone.
The Dallas Opera inaugurated mainstage performances in the Foster + Partners-designed Margot and Bill Winspear Opera House at the AT&T Performing Arts Center in October of 2009 with a new production of Verdi’s Otello and offered its first free public simulcast on Opening Night the following season, which became a standard that continues today, moving into Klyde Warren Park with the 2013 production of Carmen. In April 2012, the Dallas Opera extended its simulcast outreach beyond the Arts District to serve around 15,000 people who streamed into Cowboys Stadium in Arlington for a Texas-record-setting simulcast of Mozart’s The Magic Flute, and again the following April for Puccini’s Turandot — both helping to fulfill the Opera’s mission of bringing this cherished art form to the community.