Ira Levin Is New Musical Director of Rio

© Hermes de Paula / Agência O Globo
© Hermes de Paula / Agência O Globo

Ira Levin has been named as the Maestro Titular (music director) of the Theatro Municipal in Rio de Janeiro, effective immediately. This happens after a hugely successful production of Gounod’s Faust and concerts with tenors Vittorio Grigolo and Michael Fabiano.

The TMRJ is the largest opera house in Brazil and the second largest in South America after the Teatro Colon in Buenos Aires, where Levin was the principal guest conductor from 2011 to 2015. He was also the artistic director and principal conductor of the Theatro Municipal in Sao Paulo from 2002 to 2005 and the National Theater of Brazil from 2007 to 2009, making him the only foreigner to have had leading positions in most of the leading opera houses in South America. He will conduct at least three opera productions and several concerts each year in Rio.

Ira Levin had major conducting positions in Bremen, Kassel and the Deutsche Oper am Rhein and guest conducted in several houses including Leipzig, Dresden, Frankfurt, Hannover, Linz, Geneva, Oslo, Cape Town and New York City Opera. Ira Levin has conducted over 90 operas and his concert activity has been equally intense, encompassing a huge repertoire, and he has several CDs to his credit with the London Symphony, Scottish National Orchestra and other orchestras.

Ira Levin’s recent highlights include Janacek’s The Makropulos Case and Katja Kabanova (São Pedro Theater in São Paulo), Schumann’s Scenes from Faust and Marschner’s Der Vampyr (Grand-Théâtre de Genève) and Respighi’s La campana sommersa (New York City Opera).

Ira Levin is also still active as a concert pianist and has published several piano transcriptions as well as seven large orchestrations. His first Naxos CD, to be released in the Fall of 2019, will be of works by Max Reger and includes his orchestration of the monumental Bach Variations opus 81, originally for piano. He lives in Berlin and Rio de Janeiro.

For more information about Ira Levin see