Calgary Opera Names New Artistic Director

Italian-born conductor Jonathan Brandani will take on the role in 2022

(Photo Credit: Jenna Mahr)


Brandani is no stranger to the Canadian company, having led a critically acclaimed production of La Bohème there in 2019. He will take the reins in Fall 2022, and lead the company's return to live performances.

Born in Lucca, Italy, Brandani studied orchestral conducting first at the Universität für Musik und darstellende Kunst in Vienna and then at Yale University. He also holds qualifications in composition, piano, and harpsichord.

Brandani has served previous conducting engagements at the Deutsche Oper am Rhein in Germany, the Palau de les Arts Reina Sofia in Spain, and at the Teatro Nuovo in New York.

Brandani says he finds the opportunities for community engagement in Calgary particularly exciting. The company's various outreach projects have received large amounts of interest during the pandemic, particularly their digital school tours.

"My wife and I are looking forward to putting down roots in Calgary and enrolling our children in school here," Brandani said. "We are also excited to spend time in the mountains exploring the natural beauty of this part of the world. This city is very special and has a lot to offer us as a family."

"Personally, I am looking forward to participating in, and contributing to, Calgary Opera’s continued success," he added. "For Calgary Opera’s 50th Anniversary we will showcase that opera is for everyone and do this by extending music into the local communities, engaging in important conversations, and ensuring the stories and the people on stage accurately reflect the diverse people in our community."