Arizona Opera’s General Director Departs

[Phoenix, Arizona] (April 8, 2013) –Arizona Opera’s General Director Scott Altman announced his resignation today according to David Christensen, chairman of the company’s Board of Trustees. The Opera serves both Phoenix and Tucson and recently moved into the new Opera Center at 1636 N. Central Avenue, near Phoenix Art Museum.

“Scott came to Arizona Opera to help us take one of the most important steps in our history –finding a new home for the company and leading our move into the new Arizona Opera Center,” said Christensen. “Thanks to funds from the City of Phoenix 2006 bond election, we have our new home. Scott also led the organization through other milestones: three company premieres and two world premiere productions, a historic collaboration with the Phoenix Symphony and Ballet Arizona on the first-ever ‘TRIO Gala,’ and a unique ‘study cover program’ with the Arizona State University School of Music. Scott helped us open the door to this new era for Arizona Opera, and he is ready to move on to other professional pursuits.”

“Arizona Opera has a bright future and I am grateful to the Board and staff for their dedication and passion. Together, we have accomplished the organizational and personal objectives set when I arrived,” stated Altman. “As my fourth production season comes to a close, and the Arizona Opera Center is now occupied, the timing is perfect for my family and the Opera to enter our next chapters.”

Altman joined the company in 2009 from Opera New Jersey, which he co-founded with his wife, Lisa. “Coming into a new position in the depths of a recession was a significant challenge. Non-profits—especially arts organizations—were hit very hard,” according to Chair-elect Dr. Judith Wolf. “It hasn’t been easy and we thank Scott for his hard work and wish him nothing but the best. We look forward to next season and to the future for Arizona Opera.”

The company’s current Director of Artistic Administration, Ryan Taylor, has been appointed Interim General Director. No changes to the current or 2013–14 seasons are anticipated at this time. “We have great confidence in Ryan’s abilities,” Christensen said, “and we are fortunate to have his leadership.”

Arizona Opera promises an exceptional season in 2013–2014 in both Phoenix and Tucson. The company opens the season with the United States premiere of Gilbert and Sullivan’s H.M.S. Pinafore in a new critical edition, followed by The Flying Dutchman, with Mark Delavan, one of the Metropolitan Opera’s reigning Wagnerians, performing the title role. In the spring of 2014, Arizona Opera will present dynamic and fresh young casts in Puccini’s perennial favorite, La Bohème, the southwestern premiere of a vibrant and stylized new production of La Traviata and, in the inaugural mainstage performances in the new Arizona Opera Center, Don Pasquale.


Arizona Opera is Arizona’s only professional opera company that produces fully-staged opera performances, as well as concerts, in-school touring productions, and education and outreach programs that reach over 70,000 schoolchildren and adults annually. Founded in 1971, Arizona Opera is one of the only opera companies in the United States to serve multiple cities. To learn more about the 2013–14 season, including cast lists, click here or visit


Kate Crowley
Associate Director of Marketing and Public Relations