New consult musical director for Welsh opera company

August 8, 2017 by

Music Theatre Wales has appointed Richard Baker as its Consultant Music Director from immediate effect. Conductor and composer Richard Baker conducted the recent tour of Guto Puw’s Welsh-language opera Y Tŵr with Music Theatre Wales.

He will work closely with Artistic Director Michael McCarthy on the selection of future repertoire and liaise regularly with the company on all relevant artistic matters as well as representing the company on the widest possible basis. He will also conduct some of the company’s future productions, although Music Theatre Wales will continue with its recent and very successful practice of engaging conductors for each individual opera.

Richard was born in Dudley, West Midlands, and grew up in Shropshire. He now lives in Tregaron in Ceredigion having relocated from Berlin just over five years ago. With Wales as his new home Richard has been learning Welsh for four years, at the University in Aberystwyth.

Michael McCarthy said, “I am absolutely delighted Richard has accepted our invitation to join Music Theatre Wales as Consultant Music Director, and I know he will provide valuable input into the musical life of the company. He has been an excellent colleague working as conductor on our most recent production, Y Tŵr by Guto Puw, and his knowledge of contemporary music and new opera is second to none.

“He comes with a strong track-record in conducting new opera and supporting the development of emerging opera composers, not least as a composer himself, and he is a committed and generous artist. He also happens to live in Wales! I very much look forward to working with Richard to take MTW into a new phase of activity.”

Richard Baker said, I am thrilled to be taking up this role with a company whose work I have admired since I was a student. Music Theatre Wales has an enviable track record of producing and commissioning work by some of the most significant international figures, as well as developing work with composers new to the form. I am excited by the opportunity to help build on this legacy in the years ahead, and look forward to working with Michael and the team on introducing the finest new work to audiences in Wales, across the UK and internationally, at a time of extraordinary creativity in the art form.”

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