John Massaro (Founder/Artistic Director)
For nearly three decades, John Massaro has conducted opera, orchestral and choral music throughout the United States, Canada, Europe and the Middle East. Mr. Massaro most recently conducted Phoenix Opera’s 2007 premiere of La Bohème, Tosca in 2008, Aïda and Carmen in 2009.
In the summer of 2005, he made his Carnegie Hall debut conducting Mozart’s Requiem which led to a distinguished European tour to Budapest, Krakow, Prague, Salzburg and Vienna, where he conducted several additional Mozart masterpieces in a 250th anniversary celebration of the composer’s birth. John Massaro served as an assistant to Leonard Bernstein during the creation of A Quiet Place and to Zubin Mehta for the Israel Philharmonic’s production of Madama Butterfly in Tel Aviv, Haifa and Jerusalem. He worked extensively with the great German soprano, Elisabeth Schwarzkopf, with whom he coached both Opera and Art Song repertoire. In 2004, Massaro conducted a critically acclaimed Mikado for Arizona Opera where he served as Chorus Master and Assistant Conductor for seven years. He debuted with the Phoenix Symphony in 2002, conducting a 9/11 Memorial Concert, which included his own arrangement of the National Anthem. He has also served as Musical Director for the Phoenix Theater and the Black Theatre Troupe (BTT), where he received an AriZoni Award for BTT’s production of Blues in the Night. Recently, Massaro conducted the Mesa Symphony’s Tribute to Mozart during its 50th Anniversary Celebration at the Mesa Arts Center and Peter and the Wolf for 5,000 school children at the Chandler Center for the Arts. As the former Music Director for the Arizona Broadway Theatre, Mr. Massaro conducted numerous stage productions, including: Anything Goes, Man of La Mancha, Damn Yankees, HMS Pinafore, The World Goes Round, How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying and South Pacific. An award-winning composer and arranger of note, John began his career as a vocal coach and rehearsal pianist in Los Angeles. He later moved to New York City with his wife, renowned mezzosoprano, Gail Dubinbaum, to coach and accompany artists from the Metropolitan Opera.