Toronto-born Joshua Major joins the New England Conservatory faculty in fall 2012 as Chair of Opera Studies, as part of a leadership team that includes Vocal Arts Chair Luretta Bybee and Artistic Advisor Stephen Lord. Major has been a guest at NEC in recent years as stage director on productions of Ariadne auf Naxos, Dido and Aeneas, and La Perichole.
Major began his opera stage directing career at the age of 23 with La Cenerentola for Opera Omaha. Soon after, he worked as an assistant to Rhoda Levine at Juilliard, Cynthia Auerbach at both Chautauqua Opera and New York City Opera, and William Gaskill at the Welsh National Opera.
Major has worked as a stage director for over 25 years throughout the U.S. and Canada, developing an impressive repertoire of productions. Recent engagements include The Cunning Little Vixen for the Cape Town Opera; Lucia di Lamermoor for the Academy of Vocal Arts in Philadelphia, L'Impressions de Pelleas in Tel Aviv, La Traviata for the Jacksonville Symphony; L'Elisir d'amore for Cleveland Opera; The Tales of Hoffmann and Lucia di Lammermoor for Indianapolis Opera.
Major is completing his 20th year on the faculty of the University of Michigan where he has overseen the Opera Program, both teaching and directing, and where his productions include Falstaff, Armide, A Midsummer Night's Dream, Eugene Onegin, L'Amico Fritz, and Postcard from Morocco.
Joshua Major has proudly been the Artistic Director of the Pine Mountain Music Festival since 2003. As well he continues to be a stage director and faculty member with the Israel Vocal Arts Institute, where he has directed annually since 1993, and the Institut Canadien d’Arts Vocal based in Montreal, where he has directed since 2005.
photo by Andrew Hurlbut