Damien Geter

Damien Geter

Interim Music Director & Artistic Advisor


Describe what you do for Portland Opera

As an artistic advisor, I help to make sure all of the artistic, and some administrative decisions are seen through an equitable lens. In short, I act as a bit of a consultant as we move the art form and the organization further along in the 21st century.

As interim music director, I have a more active role specifically in shaping the musical vision for the company, and strengthening our ensemble as I work closely with our orchestra and chorus, and work closely with Nicholas Fox (our assistant conductor and Chorus Master) to support our 21/22 season. Part of my hope as interim music director is to work with the leadership team to help shape this next chapter of the way we create art at Portland Opera. We are changing our culture to be more collaborative in all aspects of artistic leadership and our work as an ensemble.

My activities in this role include being part of auditions for singers as well as the orchestra, listening to orchestral rehearsals to check for balance and other musical elements that lead to a high quality performance, working with guest conductors, and working closely with the team to select shows for future seasons based on our mission. In short, I oversee all of the musical output of Portland Opera. 

What music/book/movie/show/poem/place/moment is currently inspiring you?

Invisible Man by Ralph Ellison. I read this when I was younger, and I have some ideas about it existing outside of its book form. Even though it was written in the 50s, the themes still resonate today.

When you were a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?

I always wanted to do SOMETHING in music. When I was very young, I wanted to be a truck driver. For a bit of time in high school, I wanted to be an English teacher.

In my free time, you can usually find me...

Participating in self-care routines like exercise, resting, etc.

What is your favorite Portland Opera memory?

My favorite memory with Portland Opera was being back on the stage in over 700 days as Angelotti in Tosca!


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