The Metropolitan Opera in New York has announced today that Yannick Nézet-Séguin will take up his post as Music Director two seasons earlier, in time for the start of the Met’s 2018/19 season, which was also announced today.
By freeing up some guest conducting weeks in his busy calendar in both the 2018/19 and 2019/20 seasons Yannick will now be able to conduct three operas and two Met Orchestra concerts at Carnegie Hall in each of those seasons, instead of the two operas per season originally scheduled. In the 2018/19 season this includes the new La Traviata, two concerts at Carnegie Hall, and revivals of Debussy’s Pelléas et Mélisande and Poulenc’s Dialogues des Carmélites.
With the assumption of the Music Director title in the fall of 2018, Yannick will also be taking on the full artistic responsibilities for the orchestra, chorus, and music staff. His full-time collaboration with Met General Manager Peter Gelb on all other artistic matters will also begin at that time. As previously announced, Yannick will begin conducting a minimum of five operas per season starting with the 2020/21 season.
It was also announced that the Neubauer Family Foundation, founding sponsors of the Met’s successful Live in HD transmissions to cinema, now in its 12th season, has made a $15million gift to endow the Music Director position in honour of Yannick’s appointment. In recognition of this gift, the position will be named the Jeanette Lerman-Neubauer Music Director. Mrs. Lerman-Neubauer is a member of the Executive Committee of the Met’s Board. Her husband, Joseph Neubauer, former Chairman and CEO of Aramark, is a well-known philanthropist who is Chairman of the Board of Trustees at the University of Chicago and Chairman of the Barnes Museum in Philadelphia.
“It is wonderful for the entire company that Yannick will assume his duties two seasons ahead of schedule, said General Manager Peter Gelb. “The orchestra loves him, the chorus loves him, everyone in the building loves him. He is a truly great artist under whom the Met will only thrive.” Referring to the gift from the Neubauer Foundation, Gelb said, “The Met is so fortunate to be the recipient of such enlightened and generous philanthropy from two of our most loyal supporters, who believe in the power of transformative gifts.”
Yannick Nézet-Séguin said, “The Metropolitan Opera is the greatest opera company in the world and I’m honored to become its next Music Director. I’m eager to continue to collaborate with the Met Orchestra, Chorus, and administration to keep the Met’s artistic standards at the highest level, and to amplify the great work the company already does to reach new audience and ensure the future of the art form. I have worked with the Neubauer’s for many years in Philadelphia and know how committed they are to supporting the arts. Their extraordinary generosity for the work of the Philadelphia Orchestra and the Met makes this exciting moment even more humbling for me.”
Jeanette Lerman-Neubauer said, “Yannick insists on the timeless virtues that have led the Met to the highest standards of artistic expression. But he also adds a new kind of energy, making opera a compelling choice for broader and younger audiences. We believe his enthusiasm, energy, and inspired music-making will continue to be a major asset for the Met and will push the boundaries even further for what great opera can achieve.”
View the full press release at metopera.org