BY: Iride Aparicio

Photos Courtesy: S.F. Opera

SAN FRANCISCO, CA-- Let us start celebrating a "New Year" in the world of Classical music by raising our imaginary glasses and toasting to honor  Maestro John Keene, a celebrated conductor, vocal coach and teacher for his selection as the new Chorus Director of the San Francisco Opera, succeeding Ian Robinson. who retired at the end of last year after a 35 year tenure.

Keen's appointment came after a long months search lead by San Francisco's Opera General Director Mathew Shilvock, Artistic Managing Director Gregory Henkel, and music Director Eun Sun Kin. He will work remotely before relocating to the Bay Are to begin rehearsals for the Summer Season. He will also begin preparing the S.F. Opera Chorus for its 2022-2023 upcoming Centennial Season.

Before arriving in San Francisco, Maestro Keene was Head of Music Staff and the Chorus Master at Florida Grand Opera, where he worked with celebrities such as Tenor Placido Domingo, Baritone Sherrill Milnes y Soprano Renatta Scotto. While in Florida, Maestro Keene was also the head of the Young Artists Studio and appeared as a Conductor in Concerts. He made his Opera conducting debut in 2012, preparing the Company's chorus for Beethoven's Fidelio. He was also Assistant conductor for Wagner's Der Ring des Nibelungen and acted as a musical consultant for its recording. He was also the conductor and founder of the Elysian Opera group in New York City. He came to San Francisco as a faculty member of the Merola Opera Program and started in January he will join the San Francisco Opera as its new chorus conductor, working side by side with Music Director Eun Sun Kim

And as Francisco Opera prepares to welcome its new Chorus Conductor in person, we all are invited to participate in another San Francisco's Opera celebration. This one on January 19.

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On this date, we all will hear the announcement of a Centennial SEASON, to celebrate founding of the company, which will include one hundred years of stories and music.

Also on January 19th, the San Francisco Opera will reveal to us its lineup for its Centennial Season, in a star studded program laying the groundwork for the future, since the 2022-2023 Season Marks 100 years since the San Francisco Opera raised it curtain for the first time on September 26, l923 with a performance of La Bohéme.

And As a tribute to those singers who had sung on the stage of the San Francisco Opera, the Centennial Season announcement will include a tribute the past, remembering the voices  of all those singers the world lost in 2021, but according to Christian beliefs, are singing in eternity.