New York, NY (September 25, 2019) – Francesca Campagna has been named General Director of the Center for Contemporary Opera, effective immediately. As a globally renowned artistic manager and consultant to cultural institutions, she has built a formidable reputation for her deep knowledge of opera, and her ability to extend the reach of preeminent artists and institutions to new audiences. It is this rare combination that made her the CCO Board’s choice.
The Center for Contemporary Opera, founded in New York City in 1982, is dedicated to creating opportunities for composers and librettists and giving new life to new operas. CCO brings forward performances and new works that redefine American opera repertoire. As General Director, Ms. Campagna is responsible for the vision and strategic plan of CCO. She will oversee the development of all Center for Contemporary Opera productions in the U.S. and globally, as well as expanding education, partnerships and fundraising programs.
Ms. Campagna is the first female and first immigrant General Director in the organization’s history and was selected by the Board in an international search. Italian by birth, Francesca resides in Manhattan.
Francesca Campagna began in Italian Opera with roles at Fondazione Teatro Massimo in her native Palermo. She worked in more than 300 productions over 12 years with the most renowned artists such as Franco Zeffirelli, Graham Vick, Claudio Abbado, and Gustavo Dudamel. Her subsequent work to establish the Royal Opera House Muscat created the first opera house in the Middle East, and has been widely recognized for the artistic integrity and cultural diversity of its programming. Here in her adopted home of New York she has continued to bring opera to new audiences working as an Advisor at New York City Opera and as Executive Director of the International Friends of Festival Verdi, and as an independent producer with others.
Ms. Campagna states, “I am delighted to take on the challenge of making sure that we at CCO are always contemporary, and at the absolute forefront of our craft. My passion is bringing stories to stages. Opera embraces social issues, illuminates complex situations and allows us to feel deep emotions. I love helping people to experience that and guiding artists in this vision.” She continues, “To me there has never been a more exciting time to be in opera and expand the relevance of this vibrant art form. And at CCO we are uniquely able to do that with new commissions and by bringing contemporary work to new stages in New York and the world.”
Gene Rotberg, President of the Center for Contemporary Opera’s Board of Trustees said, “ CCO is delighted to announce Francesca Campagna as its General Director. Francesca’s terrific reputation with major opera houses throughout the world, combined with her inspiring vision for opera’s future impressed us all. She will create a new exciting chapter for the Center for Contemporary Opera.”
Sara Jobin, CCO’s Artistic Director said, “Francesca Campagna is a natural leader and collaborator and I know she will support us taking bold and brave artistic direction in our programming. I am delighted to be partnering with her.”
Richard Marshall, CCO’s founder stated, “When I founded CCO, contemporary opera did not have the support that opera had, and that is still true today. I can think of no one better than Francesca to continue the work of the Center for Contemporary Opera. It demands deep respect for opera and the bravery to keep pushing forward – she will do that brilliantly.”