Opera director and producer Christopher Mattaliano, who served as general manager of Portland Opera from 2003 to 2019, has announced the creation of OrpheusPDX, a new opera company based in Portland.
“It’s a very exciting time,” Mattaliano said in a press release. “I love opera and I especially love Portland. I look forward to adding to the cultural vitality of this great city.
The first two productions of OrpheusPDX will be those of Monteverdi The Orfeo and Philip Glass’ The Fall of House Usher, based on the short story by Edgar Allen Poe. Performances of both operas will take place in August at Lincoln Performance Hall. The selection of the 472-seat theater is part of the company’s commitment to staging unique, intimate opera productions.
Mattaliano, who is artistic and general director of OrpheusPDX, believes the new company will fill a void in the city’s operatic scene, which is primarily dominated by Portland Opera.
“Portland offers a huge variety of entertainment options for lovers of classical music, dance, visual arts and especially theatre,” he said. “The opera lover has fewer options; we have Portland Opera and some small adventurous companies. OrpheusPDX will complement the work done by our colleagues and provide Portland opera fans, new and established, with a year-round opera season and the chance to appreciate opera from a variety of new perspectives.
Each summer, the company will welcome a team of singers, conductors, directors and designers in residence. There are also plans to create a training program for 12 young singers (who will be recruited through national auditions) in 2023.
“This new venture provides a way to give back to the community that has given me so much,” Mattaliano said. “It brings together two of my greatest loves: producing high quality professional opera and providing a rich learning experience for gifted young singers and instrumentalists.”
Tickets for The Orfeo and The Fall of House Usher can be purchased here from April 26. Prices range from $50 to $110.
Related: George Manahan steps down as Music Director of the Portland Opera