Chicago Opera Theater Appoints Andreas Mitisek As General Director

On December 7, Chicago Opera Theater (COT) Board President Gregory O’Leary announced that Andreas Mitisek has signed a five-year contract to become the organization’s General Director effective September 1, 2012. Mitisek will become General Director Designate on January 1, 2012, to begin working on future seasons at COT. He will be taking over from current General Director Brian Dickie, whose contract ends August 31, 2012.

According to Mitisek:

COT is the place where some of the most interesting opera productions in the country happen and I am honored to follow such an inspiring leader as Brian Dickie, who has built his company into a trademark of artistic innovation. I look forward to becoming a part of the rich artistic fabric of Chicago, reaching out to the community, and continuing the journey into new and unexplored territories of opera.

Mitisek is currently Artistic and General Director of Long Beach Opera (LBO), a position he will continue to hold while working with COT. This will result in a unique partnership between the two companies. O’Leary explains:

Andreas, being the ever innovator and entrepreneur, will simultaneously manage Chicago Opera Theater and Long Beach Opera. Given his tremendous vision, quantifiable efficiency, and boundless energy – coupled with modern technology – he will leverage the strengths of both companies into distant parts of the country to produce opera at the next level not only in artistry, but also efficiency.

Mitisek joined LBO as Principal Conductor in 1998 and became Artistic & General Director in 2003. Under his leadership, the company doubled its budget and raised its subscriptions by 500%. LBO is well-known for its daring repertory and unconventional interpretations. In addition to its more traditional performances, LBO has presented one site-specific operas in unusual locations including public parking garages, an Olympic swimming pool, and the Ship hull of the Queen Mary.

Opera America President Marc Scorca expressed excitement about the new partnership between COT and LBO:

The appointment of Andreas Mitisek promises to continue COT’s distinguished history of inventiveness and quality. The company’s reputation for innovation will be enhanced by the unique producing partnership being established with Long Beach Opera. Both companies and their communities will benefit from Mitisek’s exciting artistic vision and dynamic leadership.

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