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Helena Binder - Stage Director
An actor and director of plays and musicals for over 20 years before focusing her career on opera, Helena Binder has earned praise for her direction of Minnesota Opera’s recent production of L’italiana in Algeri, and for her productions of Ermione, Il ritorno d’Ulisse,and Madame Butterfly for New York City Opera, where she was also Associate Director and Choreographer of last season’s Die tote Stadt. Her production of The Barber of Seville for The Dallas Opera was named one of the Top Ten Classical Performances of 2006 by the Dallas Morning News. She has directed Tales of Hoffmann for Minnesota Opera, Fidelio for Pittsburgh Opera, Madame Butterfly for Opera Toledo, L’italiana in Algeri and La Boheme for Lake George Opera, Madame Butterfly and The Magic Flute for Chattanooga Symphony and Opera, La traviata and Hansel and Gretel for Opera Roanoke, and has staged productions for The New York State Theatre Institute, Leatherstocking Theatre, Union College and Home Made Theater, including Noises Off, Foxfire, Wait Until Dark, A Life in the Theatre, Equus, Ten Little Indians and Charlotte’s Web. She has been director of the Legislative Correspondents Association Show, the oldest political satire revue in the country, for the past 24 years.
A choreographer as well, Ms. Binder choreographed Queen of Spades, Luisa Miller and Le nozze di Figaro for The Dallas Opera, and Bluebeard and La Calisto for Glimmerglass Opera where she also went on for an ailing countertenor.
As an actor, she has performed in regional theatre in the United States and abroad in roles ranging from Peter Pan to Shakespeare’s Juliet, and was singer in the rock n’ roll group,Blotto, that recorded the hit I Wanna Be A Lifeguard.
A committed arts educator, Ms. Binder taught acting at Union College and founded The Acting School, a studio for children and adults, in Schenectady, New York where she was the Performing Arts Specialist for the city’s first Magnet School Program. Along with coaching singers and actors she has worked with the University of Maryland Opera Theatre Program, the young artist programs of Minnesota Opera and Glimmerglass Opera and has taught classes and workshops all over New York State.