Daniela Candillari Appointed Principal Opera Conductor of Music Academy of the West’s Summer Festival

By Dejan Vukosavljevic
(Credit: Damjan Švarc)

The Music Academy of the West has announced the appointment of Daniela Candillari as the new Principal Opera Conductor of the Summer Festival.

Candillari has already engaged with the company by conducting the west coast premiere of Jennifer Higdon’s “Cold Mountain,” and led several works on a program of all contemporary vocal chamber music in 2021. In her new role, the conductor will prepare and rehearse the singers of the Vocal Institute as well as the Academy Festival Orchestra who perform in the Granada Theatre in Santa Barbara.

“We are privileged to have this ongoing connection with one of the world’s leading conductors that has such an affinity for vocal music. Daniela Candillari is a consummate musician and supportive educator that helps everyone tackle their artistic goals,” said Director of the Vocal Institute John Churchwell in an official statement.

“I love every opportunity to return to the Music Academy of the West to interact with the excellent young musicians who study there. Opera is such an important part of the Academy’s legacy that it is an honor to be on the team,” said Candillari of the appointment.

Candillari has led orchestras in such opera houses as the Michigan Opera Theatre, Arizona Opera, and LA Opera, among others. Candillari made her big house debut at the Metropolitan Opera conducting Aucoin and Ruhl’s “Eurydice” in November and December 2021. She is scheduled to take over in the pit for presentations of Blanchard’s “Fire shut up in my bones” at the Lyric Opera of Chicago in March and April 2022, before taking on Bizet’s “Carmen” at the Opera Theatre of Saint Louis in May and June 2022.