August 27, 2018 (Calgary, Alberta) – Calgary Opera announced today that General Director & CEO Dr. Keith Cerny will step down from the organization in January 2019 to pursue a new musical leadership opportunity.
Dr. Cerny stated, “I was deeply honoured to be appointed General Director & CEO of this outstanding company, and to have the chance to work closely with the board to design and implement a new strategy based on artistic innovation and collaboration. I will cherish the warm reception I received from Calgary Opera and the community, and the collaborations with my colleagues from other arts organizations across Canada.
Unfortunately, the travel demands of this position at Calgary Opera have put a much greater than anticipated strain on me and my family back in Texas. As a result, I have made the difficult but personally necessary decision to move on next year.” Cerny will be returning to the US to become the President and CEO of the Fort Worth Symphony Orchestra in Fort Worth, Texas.
Incoming Board Chair Jackie Pyke noted, “Since joining the company in January 2018 Keith has been instrumental in developing several new artistic partnerships for the company, introducing innovative new programming including the Canadian premiere of Joby Talbot and Gene Scheer’s Everest in 2019, recruiting legendary tenor Ben Heppner as the Honorary Chairman of the company’s Legacy Society, and developing new marketing and development programs to strengthen the company’s operations.”
In addition to his artistic achievements, Cerny’s extensive background in management consulting has strengthened the company’s financial and business processes. “Calgary Opera is in a much stronger place today than a year ago, and the board and staff will continue to build upon this solid foundation. Keith will remain a friend of the company and we plan on drawing from his considerable expertise for years to come,” Pyke expressed.
Cerny will continue to lead the ambitious company during the transition and complete planning work on several exciting mainstage projects for the 2019-2020 season while the search for his replacement begins.
“The Board and the staff thank Keith for his extensive contributions to the resilience of our company and wish him and his family well as he moves into this exciting new role,” said Pyke.