Arizona Opera Cast Members & Creatives
Conductor Michael Sakir has been praised for his "artistic authority," "fluidity of expression," and "great delicacy of feeling." He serves as the Artistic Director of Intermountain Opera Bozeman which was recently praised by the London-based Opera Now magazine as "a small but thriving opera company that it not restrained by convention." He recently completed his fourth and final season as Music Director of Opera Memphis with whom, in addition to conducting nearly two dozen production, he was deeply involved in the company's groundbreaking civic practice programs, community partnerships, and commissioning projects.
In the 2021/22 Season, Sakir conducted The Barber of Seville and Le nozze di Figaro with Intermountain Opera Bozeman and Tchaikovsky's rarely-heard masterpiece The Maid of Orleans with the Opera Company of Middlebury. He made his guest debut with Opera Idaho conducting Carmen and with Temple University conducting Le nozze di Figaro.
In the 2019/20 Season, Sakir made his Seattle Opera debut conducting Jerre Dye and Zachary Redler's The Falling and the Rising - a new opera co-commissioned with the United States Department of Defense and based on interviews with wounded American veterans.
Other recent conducting engagements include the Janiec Opera Company at the Brevard Music Center in Puccini's Madama Butterfly, Bernstein's Candide, Carlisle Floyd's Susannah, and Johann Strauss' Die Fledermaus, Opera Company of Middlebury in Bernstein's Candide, Massenet's Cendrillon, Previn's A Streetcar Named Desire, and Puccini's Il tritti-co, Des Moines Metro Opera in Philip Glass’ Galileo Galilei and Mark Campbell, Kimberly Reed, and Laura Kaminsky's As One, Opera Orlando in Donizetti's Don Pasquale, Mozart’s The Impresario, and Poulenc’s Les mamelles de Tirésias, Shreveport Opera in Mozart's The Magic Flute, Eugene Opera in Britten’s The Turn of the Screw, Northwestern University for Jake Heggie's Dead Man Walking, American Opera Projects for As One, Opera in the Ozarks for Rossini's La Cenerentola, and Opera North (NH) for Copland's The Tender Land.
Sakir has held chorus master, assistant conductor, and coach positions for nearly three dozen productions with Santa Fe Opera, Washington National Opera, Florida Grand Opera, Sarasota Opera, Des Moines Metro Opera, Pensacola Opera, and Opera Boston.
Sakir holds bachelor degrees in Piano Performance and Music History from the Oberlin Conservatory of Music and a graduate degree in Orchestral Conducting from The Boston Conservatory. He was a participant in the 2017 OPERA America Leadership Intensive. He is a native of Northern California.