Former Welsh National Opera staff director Aidan Lang is to take over as general director when David Pountney leaves the company next year.
Lang described WNO as his critic home and it is where he cut his teeth joining the company in the mid 1980s, a time of notable successes with such directors as Peter Stein, Andre Engel, Göran Järvefelt and Giles Havergal.
Lang currently holds the same role at Seattle Opera where he has worked since 2014. He will take up his new position in July 2019, reporting directly to the Chair and Board.
Before Seattle, Lang was General Director of New Zealand Opera from 2006 to 2013 and has worked at Buxton Festival, Glyndebourne Festival Opera, Glyndebourne Touring Opera, and Opera Zuid in the Netherlands.
He began his career at the Glyndebourne Festival, before joining Welsh National Opera as a staff director.
Aidan Lang said, “It will be a wrench to leave Seattle Opera, as the company is known around the world for its enthusiastic and generous opera community, and the warm and welcoming atmosphere it creates for its artists. But Welsh National Opera is where my career in opera really began, and I have always considered it to be my artistic home. It was during my time there in the 1980s that I came to understand the potential for opera to change the way that people view the society they live in, and that insight has been at the core of all my work ever since. It is an incredible honour to be appointed as WNO’s next General Director, and I am hugely looking forward to working with Tomáš (Tomáš Hanus, WNO’s Music Director ), the staff, Board, Chorus, Orchestra and the various technical crews who together make up this extraordinary company.”