Richard Russell has been named Sarasota Opera's new executive director. He replaces Susan T. Danis, who was appointed general director and CEO of the Florida Grand Opera, in Miami earlier this month.
The Board of Trustees of Sarasota Opera announced the new appointment, effective Nov. 1, earlier this afternoon. Russell was Sarasota Opera's Director of Marketing from 2005 to 2010. He moved to New Jersey and has served as the General Director of Opera New Jersey for the past three seasons.
"Richard Russell is well known and respected in Sarasota and is thoroughly knowledgeable around the operations of Sarasota Opera," said Donald Worthington, Chairman of the Board of Sarasota Opera in a press release.
Russell holds a Bachelor's and Master's Degree from Indiana University in voice performance and choral conducting. He oversaw the marketing and communications strategy for the Capital Campaign to fund the renovation of the Sarasota Opera House, as part of his previous work for five seasons at Sarasota Opera where he was responsible for public relations and marketing.
"I'm thrilled to be coming back to Sarasota Opera," says Mr. Russell in a press release. "Susan Danis left big shoes to fill, but I'm excited with the opportunity to rejoin the company that has been an important part of my life ever since I was an apprentice artist in 1989."
Sarasota Opera will open its fall season with Verdi's "Rigoletto," on Oct. 26.
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