Opera Theatre of Saint Louis Welcomes the Addition of Three New Staff Members in Public Relations, Production, and Development

St. Louis, MO, August 20, 2014 – Opera Theatre of Saint Louis, which recently concluded its 39th season announce the hire of three staff members this summer, as the company begins to prepare for its 40th anniversary season.

Erin Williams joins the Opera Theatre marketing and public relations team as the company’s next Public Relations and Publications Manager. Hans Fredrickson assumes the position of Technical Director in the Opera Theatre production department, overseeing the planning and construction of the company’s award-winning scenic designs. In the development department, Caron House joins the staff as the company’s next Manager of Institutional Grants.

Erin Williams joins the Opera Theatre staff after serving as news producer for “Arts and More” on WMUK-FM, southwest Michigan’s NPR affiliate in Kalamazoo, Michigan. She brings a breadth of media background from her experience as a print and radio journalist, having previously been a staff writer at The Washington Post, a producer at St. Louis Public Radio and DC’s WPFW-FM, and a freelance journalist forThe Anniston Star, Memphis Daily News, and the Riverfront Times. Ms. Williams assumed the position of Public Relations and Publications Manager on August 18, filling the position left by Silja Tobin, who joined the publicity department at The Metropolitan Opera in 2013.

Prior to joining the Opera Theatre production department as Technical Director, Hans Fredrickson was a member of the staff at Image Technologies Corporation, where he provided oversight for the construction of corporate and theatrical scenic designs for clients ranging from Anheuser-Busch, Stifel Nicholas, and Regent Cruise Lines, managing a team of as many as 15 at a time. A graduate of Webster University, Mr. Fredrickson first worked with OTSL as an Emerson Production Artist as the 2008 season Lighting and Projections Coordinator. He succeeds Dan Giedeman as Technical Director, who recently joined the faculty at the Fine and Performing Arts Department at Saint Louis University.

As Opera Theatre’s next Manager of Institutional Grants, Caron House brings extensive fundraising experience in the St. Louis area to Opera Theatre of Saint Louis. Most recently as the Chief Development Officer at KDHX Community Media, Ms. House oversaw a $3.5 million capital campaign to build the Larry J. Weir Center for Independent Media in Grand Center (which opened in 2013) and created an institutional giving program. She has also previously served in development roles with the Contemporary Art Museum St. Louis, The Sheldon Arts Foundation, and Da Camera of Houston. Her experience working with Opera Theatre began in 2004, when she served as OTSL’s Development Intern after completing her Master’s degree in Arts Administration at Indiana University. Since that time, she has remained active as a member of OTSL’s Young Friends program and as a member of the annual Wine & Beer Tasting host committee. Returning to OTSL in this role, Ms. House replaces Anne Grady, who devoted nearly the last twenty years of her career as the company’s first Manager of Institutional Grants.

About Opera Theatre of Saint Louis

Opera Theatre of Saint Louis is one of the leading American opera companies, known for a spring festival of inventive new productions, sung in English, featuring the finest American singers and accompanied by members of the St. Louis Symphony. As of 2014, Opera Theatre has presented 24 world premieres and 23 American premieres – which may be one of the highest percentages of new work in the repertory of any U.S. company. Described by The Sunday Times of London as “one of the few American companies worth the transatlantic fare,” Opera Theatre of Saint Louis annually welcomes visitors from nearly every state and close to a dozen foreign countries. Although the size of the theater typically limits box office income to less than a quarter of the budget, the company has consistently produced work of the highest quality while never accumulating a deficit.

Opera Theatre also has a long tradition of discovering and promoting the careers of the finest operatic artists of the current generation. Among the artists who had important early opportunities at Opera Theatre are Christine Brewer, Susan Graham, Nathan Gunn, Patricia Racette, Thomas Hampson, Jerry Hadley, Dawn Upshaw, Sylvia McNair, Erie Mills, Dwayne Croft, Kelly Kaduce, Lawrence Brownlee, Jamie Barton, Corinne Winters, Anthony Dean Griffey, and Christine Goerke. Opera Theatre has always been known for distinguished leadership: founding general director Richard Gaddes was succeeded in 1985 by general director Charles MacKay, with famed British stage director Colin Graham as artistic director and Stephen Lord (1992 – present) as music director. Timothy O’Leary was named general director in October 2008 with acclaimed stage director James Robinson succeeding Colin Graham. For more information, visit ExperienceOpera.org.

Opera Theatre gratefully acknowledges 2014 season presenting sponsor Wells Fargo Advisors.
Opera Theatre is a sustaining member of the Arts and Education Council of Greater Saint Louis, and receives major support from the National Endowment for the Arts, the Regional Arts Commission, and the Missouri Arts Council.