Ari Pelto


2021-2022 Season Conductor

Widely known for performances that have been called “poetic, earthy, vigorous” and “highly individual,” he is in demand in opera houses and with symphony orchestras throughout the United States. Appointed to Opera Colorado in 2015, Pelto conducted acclaimed performances of La Traviata, Don Giovanni, Madama Butterfly, Aida, La Boheme, Falstaff, La Fanciulla del West, Le Nozze di Figaro and Lucia di Lammermoor. In contemporary repertoire, the company recently premiered Lori Laitman’s long-awaited work, The Scarlet Letter, a recording of which was released on the Naxos label, and the world premiere of Gerald Cohen’s new opera, Steal a Pencil for Me, based on a true love story set in a concentration camp during WWII.

Recent highlights as a guest conductor include Eugene Onegin in a new production at Atlanta Opera and Lyric Opera Kansas City, Salome and Lucia Di Lammermoor at Virginia Opera, a new Nutcracker and Carmina Burana at Atlanta Ballet, L’enfant et les Sortileges at Chicago College of Performing Arts, Aida at Utah Symphony and Opera, a double bill of La Voix Humaine, starring Patricia Racette, and Gianni Schicchi at Chicago Opera Theater. He conducted a variety of symphonic programs with orchestras in the US, including Omaha Symphony and the NYU Symphony.

Other engagements include A Streetcar named Desire at Virginia Opera, The Rake’s Progress at Portland Opera, and Rigoletto, Don Pasquale, Il Barbiere di Siviglia and Don Giovanni at Opera Memphis, La Boheme at Opera Theatre of St. Louis, The Cunning Little Vixen at Chautauqua, Rusalka and La Boheme at Boston Lyric Opera, Romeo et Juliette at Minnesota Opera, The Magic Flute, Le Nozze di Figaro and Hansel and Gretel at Portland Opera and Hansel and Gretel at Utah Opera.

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