Welsh National Opera Announces Interim General Director

By Francisco Salazar

The Welsh National Opera has announced the appointment of Christopher Barron as Interim General Director.

Barron will take over the role in January 2024.

He has worked in arts management and leadership and has served as General Manager of the Edinburgh International Festival as well as Chief Executive of Birmingham Royal Ballet, Chief Executive of Scottish Opera and Scottish Ballet, and Artistic Director and Chief Executive of the Brighton Festival and Dome.

WNO’s current General Director Aidan Lang is set to retire at the end of this year following four years in the role and more than 40 years working in opera globally.

As Interim General Director, Barron will provide stability in leadership and artistic vision for WNO over the next year, delivering the agreed artistic program and preparing the ground for a new permanent leader. The search for a successor to Aidan Lang will begin in the New Year, and Barron will remain in the role during the recruitment process.

In a statement, Christopher Barron said, “As a student at Swansea University, I was lucky enough to see numerous WNO productions during its regular tours to the city. Subsequently I have followed, and been hugely impressed by, the Company’s work throughout my career. I am really delighted to be joining the team now at this important time for WNO. My main priority will be to act as guardian to the Company, planning for its future whilst continuing to deliver artistic excellence in all it presents including the extensive programme in the community.”