Des Moines Metro Opera is a major American Summer Opera Festival and is the state’s largest performing arts organization, annually producing over 100 performances in the metro area and around the region. The Company’s Summer Festival Season runs from May through July of each year during which three operas are performed in repertory for 15 mainstage performances. The Summer Festival Season takes place at the 467-seat Pote Theater at the Blank Center for the Performing Arts in Indianola, Iowa. In 2014, the Company began its Second Stages Series, which set out to create collaborative performances designed to engage new audiences in unique spaces throughout the city. Since its founding in 1973, Des Moines Metro Opera has presented 145 productions of 80 different operas.
The company was founded by Robert L. Larsen as Artistic Director and Douglas Duncan as Managing Director. In 1988, Jerilee M. Mace succeeded Duncan and became Executive Director, a position she held until 2006. In 2010, Robert L. Larsen retired after having served as conductor and stage director for well over 120 productions for all 38 years of his tenure. He was succeeded by Michael Egel as Artistic Director in 2010. David Neely was named Music Director and Principal Conductor in 2012. Egel took on the title of General and Artistic Director in 2013.
We’re proud to be among the leading American summer festival opera companies, and we are grateful to our contributors and our audiences for helping to create this special experience: some of the most remarkable emerging vocal talent of our time, singing in a unique theatre with the members of the festival orchestra in extraordinary productions—all combine to make Des Moines Metro Opera the choice destination in central Iowa each summer for stunning vocalism, professional theatre and educational initiatives in music.