The Virginia Opera announced the appointment of Anne-Carolyn Bird in a newly reorganized position of Executive/Artistic Coordinator. She starts the new job on Aug. 1.
Bird has experience singing on Virginia Opera stages, including recently in their production of "The Marriage of Figaro" (2013) -- here's a review in the Post of the work. She'll also be singing with the company this season at the Opera in the Park performances on August 27 at Dogwood Dell Amphitheatre in Richmond and on September 10 at Town Point Park in Norfolk.
"It cannot be understated that her opera performance expertise, starring in over 25 opera titles ranging from traditional fare ('The Marriage of Figaro') to modern ('Appomattox') and to Baroque ('Alcina') repertory, brings a wealth of understanding about the business of producing opera along with administrative background that coincides with Virginia Opera’s professional operation as a company," Russell Allen, president and CEO, tells Style. "Her understanding of the business of opera will be a boon to us as a company. Virginia Opera has not previously had this specific combination of experience in either the Artistic Coordinator position or the Executive Assistant position."
Here's more from the press release:
The new position of Executive/Artistic Coordinator was created with three primary areas of responsibility that include: to serve as artistic coordinator for the Artistic Department; to be a general assistant to the Boards of Virginia Opera; and, to serve as support for the President and CEO, Russell P. Allen, and the Principal Conductor and Artistic Advisor, Adam Turner. This position combines responsibilities from two other positions eliminated in departmental reorganization.
Russell Allen, President and CEO, commented, “Not only does Anne-Carolyn have the artistic experience and acumen to be a strong support in the Artistic Department, she has significant experience in administration and management. She will be the perfect addition to our Virginia Opera management team.” Ms. Bird’s strong background in opera will also enable her to successfully fulfill assignments on specific special projects with independent responsibilities.
In anticipation of beginning work with Virginia Opera, Ms. Bird notes: "I am thrilled to be taking such a big step toward a new career path, and even more so that it is happening with Virginia Opera. I loved my time working here as a performer, and I am looking forward to joining the "family" of the administrative team. I am hopeful that I can be a pivotal part of the continued growth of this vital and vibrant organization."
Ms. Bird moves to Norfolk from Richmond, VA accompanied by her husband, baritone Matthew Burns – a native of Richmond, and two children. Mr. Burns has performed in two Virginia Opera productions over the past five years (The Marriage of Figaro (2013) and Orphée (2012), and returns in this season’s upcoming The Barber of Seville as well as with Ms. Bird in the previously mentioned Opera in the Park productions.
Adam Turner, Principal Conductor and Artistic Advisor, noted, "We're excited to welcome Anne-Carolyn to the artistic team of Virginia Opera in this important new role. With her significant experience as a performing artist throughout the operatic industry, she offers Virginia Opera a wealth of knowledge and expertise, ensuring a commanding contribution to our organization. It is important to our artistic team to have her level of artistic expertise on a day-to-day basis."
Ms. Bird will immediately be thrust into preparations for the December Emerging Artist Auditions held annually by Virginia Opera, and into reporting assignments generated for both the Finance Committee and Executive Committee of the Board. She also will be immediately involved in chorus coordination and activity, as well as numerous other responsibilities related to her three areas of concentration.