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Part of the 80th Anniversary Campaign
Celebrating the Legacy and Vision of Christopher Hahn

Pittsburgh Opera is built on traditions and repertoire that define the art form. From Mozart to Puccini and Verdi to Wagner, Pittsburgh Opera regularly showcases perennial favorites as well as lesser-known works that deserve to be seen and heard.

Yet with every generation comes new opportunity. General Director Christopher Hahn's tenure is one that will be remembered for having upheld this tradition while simultaneously moving the company into the 21st century.

Over the past 20 years, Christopher has built a legacy of programming that has showcased some of the most interesting compositional talent, redefined the art form for new audiences, and presented operas that inspire, challenge, and spark conversation.

Join Us

We invite you to be a founding member of the Pittsburgh Opera New Music Fund, ensuring a future for groundbreaking opera productions in our city and celebrating the vision of Christopher Hahn. By making a lead gift, you join others who have made philanthropic investments in the mission of Pittsburgh Opera’s diverse programming.

We seek to raise a total of $5 million for the New Music Fund. The Fund will be managed within the organization’s Board Reserve Fund, a donor designated fund for long term support of the Opera. Revenue will be directed towards the identification and presentation of contemporary works that deserve to be seen, world premieres that expand the boundaries of the art form, and unique performance opportunities for Pittsburgh Opera’s Resident Artist Program. Together, we honor Christopher Hahn’s legacy and continue to position the company as an industry leader into the future.

Gratitude and Gift Arrangements

Pittsburgh Opera is deeply grateful for your consideration of support. For questions or gift arrangements, please reach out to Rachel Kisic, Director of Development, at (412) 281-0912 x226 or


Soon after arriving in Pittsburgh, Christopher began to introduce works such as Street Scene by Kurt Weill, Dead Man Walking by Jake Heggie, Billy Budd by Benjamin Britten and Flight by Jonathan Dove - important works that hadn't been seen on the Pittsburgh Opera stage, and that would begin to introduce a contemporary musical aesthetic that deserved to sit side by side with foundational works. In the 2013-14 season, Christopher took a leap and programmed two 21st century works: Dark Sisters by Nico Muhly and Paul's Case by Gregory Spears. The latter piece utilized the Bitz Opera Factory for the first time, giving birth to the Second Stage series.

Dark Sisters (2013)

Dark Sisters (2013), photo credit: David Bachman


The operas were a success, and Pittsburgh Opera began programming even more contemporary works, including Sumeida's Song by Mohammad Fairouz, Little Women by Mark Adamo, 27 by Ricky Ian Gordon's, and As One by Laura Kaminsky. Recognizing the absolute necessity of the art form’s development and evolution, Pittsburgh Opera made a monumental decision and presented its first world premiere in 2017: The Summer King by Daniel Sonenberg. While this was Pittsburgh Opera's first world premiere, it would not be its last.

The Summer King (2017)

The Summer King (2017), photo credit: David Bachman


What followed was a succession of new works including The Long Walk by Jeremy Howard Beck, The Last American Hammer by Peter Hilliard, Glory Denied by Tom Cipullo, Charlie Parker's Yardbird by Daniel Schnyder, the world premiere of Savage Winter by Douglas Cuomo (subsequently transferred to the Brooklyn Academy of Music), and The Rose Elf by David Herzberg.

In 2022, Pittsburgh Opera once again found itself in the national spotlight, presenting the world premiere of Christopher Cerrone and Stephanie Fleischmann's In A Grove - a powerful work based on the short story by Ryūnosuke Akutagawa. Pittsburgh Opera then presented Denis & Katya by Philip Venables, providing yet another showcase for the company during the 2023 OPERA America Conference held in Pittsburgh.

Charlie Parker's Yardbird (2021)

Charlie Parker's Yardbird (2021), photo credit: David Bachman


On the immediate horizon, Pittsburgh Opera is committed to two upcoming world premieres: Jennifer Higdon and Jerre Dye's Woman With Eyes Closed (2025) and a yet to be announced commission from Laura Kaminsky (2026). As we look to the future, the breadth and scope of contemporary opera is growing, and Pittsburgh Opera is committed to including it in programming for years to come.