New York, NY (January 2, 2019) – The Metropolitan Opera announced today that Thomas Lausmann, currently the Head of Music at the Vienna State Opera, will become the Met’s Director of Music Administration at the start of the 2019–20 season. Lausmann will replace Assistant General Manager John Fisher, who is stepping down after many years at the Met to resume his freelance musical career. Fisher will continue to coach many of the world’s top singers on a freelance basis, including on occasion at the Met.
“John Fisher is a brilliant musician and one of the world’s great vocal coaches,” said the Met’s Jeanette Lerman-Neubauer Music Director, Yannick Nézet-Séguin. “He has been an invaluable artistic asset to the company and we are sad to see him go. I am delighted, however, that Thomas Lausmann has agreed to take on this essential position at the Met. I know that he will ensure continued musical excellence at the company.”
John Fisher said, “I have hugely enjoyed all my years in management at the Met - it has been a real privilege. I know I will be sad to leave but I also look forward to returning to my musical career, and to returning to the Met from time to time.”
Thomas Lausmann said, “I am thrilled to join the Met as Director of Music Administration and am very much looking forward to working with Yannick Nézet-Séguin and the entire Met family.”
Thomas Lausmann has been Head of Music at the Vienna State Opera since 2013, where he was Solo Répétiteur since 2010. He is also a pianist with the Vienna Philharmonic. At the Bayreuth Festival, Lausmann has been Musical Assistant to Christian Thielemann since 2008, and in 2016 and 2017 served as Head of Music for the festival’s Ring cycle conducted by Marek Janowski. Lausmann studied at the Hochschule für Musik Stuttgart, the Eastman School of Music (Master of Music), Manhattan School of Music (Professional Studies in Opera Coaching) and received further training at San Francisco Opera’s Merola Opera Program. He began his career at New York City Opera serving as Assistant Conductor from 2001 to 2007. Additional positions include Assistant Conductor at Washington National Opera, Head of Music and Casting Consultant with the Wolf Trap Opera, Solo Répétiteur and Assistant to the Head of Music at the Hamburg State Opera, Associate Head of Music at the Komische Oper Berlin, as well as Principal Coach at the Salzburg Festival. Thomas has worked as a guest coach at Houston Grand Opera, Frankfurt Opera, Seattle Opera, and at the Los Angeles Philharmonic.
John Fisher studied at Glasgow University and the Royal Academy of Music & Drama and The London Opera Centre. His career, which began as Music Director of Welsh National Opera's 'Opera for All' project, has included work at the Théâtre à la Monnaie (Brussels), Nederlands Opera (Amsterdam), La Scala (Milan), where he was also Artistic Administrator, and as the first non-Italian to be appointed Artistic Director in a state-funded Italian opera house, at the Teatro alla Fenice (Venice). He was Director of Opera and Vocal Productions and Executive Producer at Deutsche Grammophon Gesellschaft, Hamburg, and Director of Music Administration at the Metropolitan Opera, New York. In 2006, he took up the post of Chief Executive and Artistic Director at Welsh National Opera, a role he held for five years. He subsequently returned to the Metropolitan Opera as Assistant General Manager. Fisher has collaborated throughout his career with the industry's most distinguished conductors, including Claudio Abbado, Carlos Kleiber and Sir Georg Solti. He has also worked extensively with many of the world's greatest opera stars, notably José Carreras, Marilyn Horne, Luciano Pavarotti, and Dame Joan Sutherland. His recent work in New York has also featured engagement with the Young Artists program at the Metropolitan Opera and at the world-renowned Juilliard School. As Hodge International Chair in Opera since 2015 he has been a regular visiting artist at the Royal Welsh College of Music & Drama working with many young singers on the College’s Masters program in Advanced Opera Performance.