OPERA NEWS - American Conductor Stephen Lord Resigns from Posts at Michigan Opera Theatre and Opera Theatre of Saint Louis, Released from Performances at Opera Maine
From Development server
19 June 2019

American Conductor Stephen Lord Resigns from Posts at Michigan Opera Theatre and Opera Theatre of Saint Louis, Released from Performances at Opera Maine

AMERICAN CONDUCTOR STEPHEN LORD has resigned from his positions as Principal Conductor at Michigan Opera Theatre and Music Director Emeritus at Opera Theatre of Saint Louis, and has been released from his contract to conduct performances this summer at Opera Maine, following allegations of sexual harassment published on the website Twin Cities Arts Reader

Lord served as music director at Opera Theatre of Saint Louis from 1991 through 2017 and thereafter took on the title of Music Director Emeritus. He was appointed Principal Conductor at Michigan Opera Theatre in 2016. 

A statement issued today by Opera Theatre of Saint Louis reads:  “We are shocked to learn of the serious allegations made against Stephen Lord in an online publication on June 18th. There is no place for harassment of any kind at Opera Theatre of Saint Louis and we have strict policies in place for dealing with such matters.

"We have not received any complaints or reports of harassment against this company member at our organization, but we take any allegation of possible misconduct extremely seriously. Given the serious nature of these allegations, we will be conducting a full and thorough independent investigation into this matter." 

Lord, who was to have conducted OTSL's Center Stage concert on June 25, has been replaced by Roberto Kalb, the company's Resident Conductor and Head of Music.

Michigan Opera Theatre's statement, published today, noted that the allegations published in the Twin Cities Arts Reader, "do not align with the company's values and standards."

“Stephen has had a long and successful relationship with Michigan Opera Theatre, and we appreciate his artistic leadership, especially in his last three years as Principal Conductor,” said Wayne S. Brown, Michigan Opera Theatre's President and CEO, in the statement. Lord was to have conducted November 2019 performances of the company's production of Sweeney Todd as well as May 2020 performances of Pagliacci.

In a statement posted to Opera Maine's Facebook page on Thursday, the company announced that it was "saddened to learn of allegations of sexual harassment against Maestro Stephen Lord. Opera Maine has never received a complaint of sexual harassment against Maestro Lord. In the best interests of Opera Maine, Maestro Lord will not conduct our production of The Magic Flute this summer. The performances will continue as scheduled." On June 26, the company announced that Roberto Kalb, resident conductor and head of music at Opera Theatre of Saint Louis, will lead the Magic Flute performances in Portland. spacer 

More information can be found at Opera Theatre of Saint LouisMichigan Opera Theatre and Opera Maine.



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