REWIND: From The Australian, September 15, 2007
THE Sydney Opera House has opted for a performing arts professional, the Australian Ballet’s Richard Evans, to lead its entrepreneurial drive and refurbishment plans.
Mr Evans’s appointment as chief executive was announced by the NSW government yesterday after speculation over who would replace Norman Gillespie, who departed last month.
Sydney Dance Company and Bell Shakespeare, two companies that present seasons at the Opera House, welcomed Mr Evans’s appointment. Kim Williams, chair of the Sydney Opera House Trust, said the trust was pleased to appoint a performing arts professional from Australia.
Mr Evans has worked with the State Theatre Company of South Australia, Bell Shakespeare and the Australian Ballet. ‘‘ It was getting to the point of my career where I wanted to make a broader contribution,’’ he said yesterday.
‘‘ With the challenges the Opera House faces, there’s an enormous amount that needs to happen. I saw that the person that needed to be in the role was someone who had a good relationship with the (arts) companies, and who had an understanding of how the companies operate, in the theatres.’’
In recent years, the Opera House has increased its role as a producer rather than simply be a venue for hire. There are plans to rebuild the Opera Theatre in a project that would require multiple funding partners.