Grand Teton Music Festival Announces Five-Year Contract Extension for Music Director Sir Donald Runnicles

By Chris Ruel
Image Source: Donald Runnicles Official Website

Grand Teton Music Festival’s (GTMF) Board of Directors has extended Sir Donald Runnicles’ contract as Music Director through 2026 with Board Co-Chairs John Costello and Barbara McCelvey crediting the maestro with the artistic growth of the Festival and outstanding leadership, according to the Festival’s press release.

The five-year extension will see Runnicles’ tenure increase from 15 to 20 years.

“Sir Donald Runnicles is one of the most significant musicians in the symphonic and operatic world—and he calls Jackson Hole his home away from home. A well-respected collaborator, I’m honored to partner with him for the next six seasons and to continue to build the legacy of our Festival as one of the world’s greatest,” stated Executive Director Emma Kail in the release.

Runnicles described his term as GTMF’s Music Director as a defining period in his life, musically and personally, adding, “I’m grateful for the board’s support, thrilled for the future, and incredibly proud of what we’ve achieved together. I’m looking forward to having us all come back together next summer, our 60th season, when we return home to the Festival we love. It’s my honor and privilege to make music and share it with our extended family in the beautiful surroundings of Jackson Hole.”

The Festival’s 2021 season is its 60th and will run from July 4 through August 21. The first two weeks will feature outdoor performances for larger audiences before returning inside for five weeks of socially distanced performances at Walk Festival Hall.

Runnicles’ is concurrently the General Music Director of the Deutsche Oper Berlin, Principal Guest Conductor of the Atlantic Symphony Orchestra, and, as of 2019, the first-ever Principal Guest Conductor of the Sydney Symphony Orchestra. The maestro and Deutsche Oper Berlin recently received a Grammy® Award nomination in the “Best Opera Recording” category for the Naxos live recording of Zemlinsky’s “Der Zwerg.”