Michael Scarola


Interim Director of Lyric Theatre, Professor of Practice





A native of New York City, Michael Scarola joins SMU this year as Visiting Professor of Practice. He has been on the directing staffs of the Metropolitan Opera, Lyric Opera of Chicago, Seattle Opera, Los Angeles Opera and New York City Opera. He has had the privilege of working with such prestigious artists as Renée Fleming, Kelli O’Hara, Cecilia Bartoli, Stephanie Blythe, Plácido Domingo, Luciano Pavarotti, Lawrence Brownlee, Dmitri Hvorostovsky, Bryn Terfel, James Morris and many others.

Career highlights include directing Bernstein’s Mass for the Dallas Symphony Orchestra in commemoration of the 40th Anniversary of the JFK Assassination. Recent productions include Puccini’s La Rondine at Dallas Opera, Rigoletto, Lucia di Lammermoor and Der Fliegende Holländer for Madison Opera, Don Giovanni and Die Entführung aus dem Serail for Arizona Opera, The Mikado at Michigan Opera Theatre, La Bohéme at Opera Pacific, Macbeth at Dayton Opera, and A Richard Rodgers Celebration and An Evening of Cole Porter for the Boston Pops conducted by Keith Lockhart.

In May of 2006, Scarola had the honor of working with Emmy Award-winning Partisan Pictures in its filming of a feature documentary on the incredible story of Raphael Schächter and his performances of Verdi’s Messa da Requiem in the concentration camp of Terezín, near Prague in the Czech Republic. Working as Music Consultant for the project, he was instrumental in capturing this tribute performance of author and conductor Murry Sidlin’s Defiant Requiem – a feature of the 2006 Prague Spring International Music Festival – as the on-set camera director. The Emmy-nominated film was shown as part of the prestigious DocuWeeks Film Festival in New York City and Los Angeles. It has aired on PBS and has been released on DVD.

Scarola has worked extensively with numerous Young Artist and university programs including the Tanglewood Festival Fellows, Academy of Vocal Arts in Philadelphia, Opera Institute of Boston University, Florida Grand Opera Young Artists Program, Cincinnati Opera Young Artists Program, DePauw University Opera, International Vocal Arts Institute in Tel Aviv, Israel, La Musica Lirica, as well as many others. He was visiting Guest Director of Opera at the University of Utah for six years.

Scarola is currently Adjunct Faculty at New York University/Steinhardt School of Music where he both teaches and directs. This past summer, he joined the faculty of Opera Lucca in Italy to direct Gianni Schicchi. Future engagements include returning to both NYU and Opera Lucca.

Michael Scarola