Lyric Opera names Enrique Mazzola as new music director

  • The Lyric Opera of Chicago has designated Italian conductor Enrique Mazzola as its next music director starting with the 2021-22 season.

    The Lyric Opera of Chicago has designated Italian conductor Enrique Mazzola as its next music director starting with the 2021-22 season. Courtesy of Jean-Baptiste Millot

  • British conductor Sir Andrew Davis will conclude his two-decades-long tenure as the Lyric Opera of Chicago music director at the end of the 2020-21 season.

    British conductor Sir Andrew Davis will conclude his two-decades-long tenure as the Lyric Opera of Chicago music director at the end of the 2020-21 season. Courtesy of Dario Acosta

 
 
Updated 9/12/2019 5:45 PM

Italian conductor Enrique Mazzola will be the next music director of the Lyric Opera of Chicago starting with the 2021-22 season.

The Lyric announced Thursday that Mazzola succeeds British conductor Sir Andrew Davis, who concludes his two-decades-long tenure as Lyric music director at the end of the 2020-21 season.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
 

"I am thrilled that Enrique Mazzola has accepted Lyric's invitation to become our next music director," Lyric general director Anthony Freud said in a statement. "He has accrued a wealth of international experience in his career to date, and he is tremendously well liked and respected by the Lyric Opera Orchestra and Chorus. I am confident that our audiences and the people of Chicago will be captivated by his artistry, his charm and personality, as has certainly been the case during his initial engagements here in the past few years."

For the 2019-20 season, Mazzola will conduct six performances of Verdi's early tragedy "Luisa Miller" starting Saturday, Oct. 12. Meanwhile Davis will conduct a revival of Rossini's comedy "The Barber of Seville" as the Lyric's season opener starting Saturday, Sept. 28. In 2020, Davis also will conduct a new-to-Chicago production of Tchaikovsky's tragedy "The Queen of Spades" and three complete cycles of Wagner's four-opera epic "Der Ring des Nibelungen" in April.

"I had actually intended to leave after the Ring cycles next spring, until Anthony persuaded me to stay for one more season! It will be hard to leave, but the timing is right for me and I am confident that Enrique will be a splendid music director for Lyric," said Davis in a statement. "He's a fine musician and someone who will continue the tradition of the Lyric Opera family. It's fantastic to have two years together for our transition."

For more information, call (312) 827-5600 or visit lyricopera.org.

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