Aidan Lang became Seattle Opera’s General Director on September 1, 2014. Selected by the Seattle Opera Board of Trustees after a two-year, international search process, Lang moved to Seattle in March, 2014 to effect a smooth transition of leadership from Seattle Opera’s previous General Director, Speight Jenkins.
Before moving to Seattle, as General Director of New Zealand Opera from 2006 to 2013 Lang strove to ensure that every production was theatrically stimulating and musically ambitious. Working collaboratively is a top priority for Lang, and during his tenure New Zealand Opera implemented a series of collaborations with such companies as Glyndebourne, Opera North, and Welsh National Opera, bringing exciting productions from directors Nikolaus Lehnhoff (Jen?fa), Tim Albery (Macbeth), and Christopher Alden (Turandot) to New Zealand. In addition to bringing productions in, Lang made it a priority to develop the capacity to build productions in the country, establishing New Zealand’s first-ever opera production workshop. This workshop resulted in international co-productions with Scottish Opera (L’italiana in Algeri), Victorian Opera (Serse), and last year’s Der Fliegende Holländer and La Cenerentola with Opera Queensland in Australia. Future international co-productions are also underway with Cape Town Opera, West Australian Opera, Opera Queensland, State Opera of South Australia, and Victorian Opera. Lang’s collaborative approach has also reaped significant rewards in the business area. With the expansion of the company’s reach to include Christchurch, in addition to its performing centers in Auckland and Wellington, Lang rebranded New Zealand Opera as a truly national company, one that serves the entire country. The partnership Lang spearheaded with Creative New Zealand (the country’s national arts development agency) resulted in significant increases to its core grant funding, securing long-term financial stability for the company.