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Paris prepares to change head of Opéra

September 13, 2018 by norman lebrecht

15 comments.


Stéphane Lissner, directeur of the Paris Opéra since 2014, has been told that his contract will not be renewed beyond 2021, it is officially confirmed today.

Sources are saying the decision to replace him has been manipulated by President Macron’s director of communications, Sylvain Fort.

A previous version opf this story misread a key element.


Comments (15)

  1. René says:

    This is inaccurate. Sources are not saying Sylvain Fort is under consideration to replace Lissner; they are saying that he played a key role in persuading Macron not to renew Lissner’s contract. “Des rumeurs se font l’écho de l’intervention de Sylvain Fort, très proche d’Emmanuel Macron, pour ne pas renouveler le mandat de Stéphane Lissner.” (Quote from the francemusique.fr article referred to in this post)

  2. clarrieu says:

    Norman…dear…

  3. Anonymous says:

    A more likely replacement would be Maurice Xiberras who’s had Marseille for some time. Outside bets on Claude Cortese from Nancy and Valerie Chevalier from Montpellier.

    1. John Borstlap says:

      Chevalier is not suited to such a job, she has only very vague ideas about classical music and does not know how to communicate with musicians.

      1. John Rook says:

        Sounds like the perfect fit, then.

  4. Mathieu says:

    The current version of the story still misreads a crucial element. Mr Fort is not in line to succeed Mr Lissner, he was just instrumental in Lissner’s demotion. The name of Mr Lissner’s successor is not yet known.

  5. Harold Clarkson says:

    Dominique Meyer would surely be an ideal successor…

    1. Hermann Lederer says:

      Best joke the day

    2. Algot says:

      You are spot on. Who else can compete ? He was brilliant in Vienna, he would be a perfect fit in Paris.

      1. Hermann Lederer says:

        Thank god his „brilliant“ tenure comes to an end. At least in Vienna!

    3. AndrewB says:

      Dominique Meyer was an excellent Director at the Theatre Des Champs – Elysees for some years ( in the early 2000s) so is no stranger to Paris. The seasons during his tenure were first class.

  6. John Rook says:

    This makes complete sense. Sylvain Fort knows a lot about opera, Lissner does not. Good on him for forcing this change.

  7. Sue says:

    What is it about the French obsession with heads?

    1. John Rook says:

      They are intensely political appointments. Governments can’t get enough of placing ‘right-minded’ people at the heads of their institutions.

  8. Jonathan Sutherland says:

    Is Algot’s comment that Dominique Meyer was “brilliant in Vienna” some kind of belated April Fool’s Day joke?
    Clearly Algot never experienced the Golden Age of Egon Seefehlner’s administration.
    Monsieur Meyer was the worst thing to hit the Wiener Staatsoper since the Allied bombing in March 1945.


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