Opera Saratoga Artistic And General Director Lawrence Edelson To Step Down After 2022 Summer Festival Season

By: May. 11, 2022

Opera Saratoga Artistic And General Director Lawrence Edelson To Step Down After 2022 Summer Festival Season

Opera Saratoga's Artistic and General Director Lawrence Edelson announced today that the 2022 Summer Festival will be the final season in his leadership role with the company. Edelson, who joined the company in 2014, will remain in his position through the end of July.

This fall, he will be joining The University of Houston as Professor of Practice and Artistic Director of The Moores Opera Center, one of the most prestigious programs for the training of operatic artists in the country. Edelson will also continue in his role as Artistic and General Director of American Lyric Theater in New York City, where he mentors emerging opera composers, librettists and dramaturgs and oversees the development of new works.

Under Edelson's leadership, Opera Saratoga has reached new and artistic and fiscal heights, even as the company has navigated a series of unforeseen challenges including the COVID-19 pandemic and forced relocation from its home theater due to necessary renovations. Opera Saratoga Board Chair Robert C. Miller says that "Opera Saratoga has thrived under Larry's direction. With a passion for excellence, Larry led with focus, vision, action, and innovation. Larry understood the art as well as the business of opera, always aware that one could never exist without the other. Both artistically and financially, Larry is leaving Opera Saratoga far better than when he arrived. The skill, professionalism, and commitment so ably demonstrated here will serve him well in all his future endeavors. We thank him and we wish him well."

Opera Saratoga Board President Martha Strohl adds that "Larry's artistic direction has enabled the quality of our productions to increase dramatically in terms of repertoire, including presenting new works of social relevance, and in the selection and nurturing of young artists and principal singers. He enjoys a high level of success and recognition in the community, bolstering both the reputation of the company and facilitating increased levels of philanthropic support. We shall miss him, and certainly wish him nothing but the best as he moves forward to this next step in his career."

Highlights of Edelson's tenure at Opera Saratoga have included multiple world and American premiere productions, including The Long Walk by Jeremy Howard Beck and Stephanie Fleischmann, The Witches of Venice by Philip Glass and Beni Montresor, and Ellen West by Ricky Ian Gordon and Frank Bidart; the company's first Spanish language opera, Il Postino, by Daniel Catán; Opera Saratoga's first foray into Baroque repertoire with Dido and Aeneas; and the critically acclaimed production and recording of Marc Blitzstein's The Cradle Will Rock, directed and choreographed by Edelson and conducted by John Mauceri. Under Edelson's oversight, the company has also doubled the size of its Young Artist Program; deepened its commitment to community engagement and education initiatives; and initiated a new therapeutic music program for those living with Alzheimer's Disease and other forms of dementia, which will launch this fall after a protracted delay due to the pandemic.

Edelson has also fostered extensive new collaborative relationships for the company, many of which are showcased as part of Opera Saratoga's upcoming 2022 Summer Festival from May 26th through July 10th, which includes performances at multiple venues across the region, including Sweeney Todd at the Saratoga Performing Arts Center, The Barber of Seville at Proctors, Sky on Swings at The Egg, and Rossini's Petite Messe Solennelle at The Round Lake Auditorium.

"When I first came to Saratoga Springs as a guest director in 2013, I fell in love with this community," says Edelson, "and when I had the opportunity to join Opera Saratoga as Artistic and General Director the following year, I knew that I was about to embark on a very exciting journey. I truly could not have imagined how rewarding my time at Opera Saratoga would be. I have had some of the most meaningful experiences of my life during my time with the company, and I am deeply grateful to the artists, our entire staff, and our committed and generous supporters who make it possible for Opera Saratoga to contribute so vibrantly to the region year round."

The Board of Directors is assembling a committee to conduct a national search for Edelson's successor. During the transitional period, Edelson has agreed to serve as a consultant to the company to ensure continuity. "While it is bittersweet to be leaving a company that I love," says Edelson, "I have no doubt that with the outstanding work of Managing Director Amada Robie, and the continued commitment of Opera Saratoga's staff and Board of Directors, the company's new leader will be able to build upon the six-decade history of this remarkable organization. It has been my great honor to steward Opera Saratoga for the past eight years, and I am excited to see what the next chapter will be for this very special company."


Happy Birthday, La Divina! Photo
Happy Birthday, La Divina!

Maria Callas—or Maria Anna Cecilia Sofia Kalogeropoulos—was born in New York City on December 2, 1923. She was a supernova who blazed across the opera world (and beyond) and it will never be the same. If you need proof, take a listen to the Warner Classes/Erato boxed set, “La Divina: Maria Callas In All Her Roles,” which was issued in September, consisting of 131 CDs of La Callas in all her 74 roles.

Classic Holiday Opera AMAHL AND THE NIGHT VISITORS To Be Presented At Central Presbyterian Photo
Classic Holiday Opera AMAHL AND THE NIGHT VISITORS To Be Presented At Central Presbyterian Church in Downtown Denver

Central City Opera invites you to experience the magic of the holiday season with Gian Carlo Menotti's family-friendly opera, 'Amahl and the Night Visitors.' This heartwarming production will grace the stage at the Central Presbyterian Church in Denver for four captivating performances on December 23 and 24, combining enchanting storytelling, profound music, and a talented ensemble to bring the Christmas tale to life. 

Review: Met’s First TANNHAUSER of the Season Interrupted by Demonstrators Photo
Review: Met’s First TANNHAUSER of the Season Interrupted by Demonstrators

All that was missing were shouts of “food fight!” to turn last night’s performance of Richard Wagner’s TANNHAUSER—the first of the Met’s season—into a version of National Lampoon’s Night at the Opera, as climate activists interrupted the house debut of the great baritone Christian Gerhaher, and audience members traded barbs with the demonstrators, threatening the company’s determination that “the show must go on.”

New York City Opera to Present An Evening Of Caroling At Bank Of America Winter Village At Photo
New York City Opera to Present An Evening Of Caroling At Bank Of America Winter Village At Bryant Park

New York City Opera presents an evening of caroling at Bank of America Winter Village at Bryant Park, featuring singers from Fiorello H. LaGuardia High School of Music & Art and Performing Arts Show Choir.

More Hot Stories For You


Justin Austin / Howard Watkins in Opera Justin Austin / Howard Watkins
Carnegie Hall (3/05-3/05)
SongStudio: Young Artists Recital in Opera SongStudio: Young Artists Recital
Carnegie Hall (1/27-1/27)
SongStudio: Renée Fleming Master Class in Opera SongStudio: Renée Fleming Master Class
Carnegie Hall (1/26-1/26)
SongStudio: Angel Blue Master Class in Opera SongStudio: Angel Blue Master Class
Carnegie Hall (1/24-1/24)
Diana Damrau / Helmut Deutsch in Opera Diana Damrau / Helmut Deutsch
Carnegie Hall (2/06-2/06)
SongStudio: Nicholas Phan Master Class in Opera SongStudio: Nicholas Phan Master Class
Carnegie Hall (1/23-1/23)
Regula Mühlemann / Tatiana Korsunskaya in Opera Regula Mühlemann / Tatiana Korsunskaya
Carnegie Hall (5/08-5/08)
Matthias Goerne / Evgeny Kissin in Opera Matthias Goerne / Evgeny Kissin
Carnegie Hall (4/25-4/25)
Ema Nikolovska / Howard Watkins in Opera Ema Nikolovska / Howard Watkins
Carnegie Hall (3/28-3/28)
SongStudio: Graham Johnson Master Class in Opera SongStudio: Graham Johnson Master Class
Carnegie Hall (1/22-1/22)