The Industry, Los Angeles’ experimental opera company, usually does things differently. But this month, the group has announced a new leadership setup, in line with recent restructurings at the city’s other major opera companies.
Beginning July 1, a triumvirate of artistic directors will oversee The Industry’s projects. Along with Yuval Sharon, who founded the company in 2010, composer Ash Fure and writer and artist Malik Gaines join in as co-artistic directors.
The multipronged leadership model resembles recent appointments at other Los Angeles organizations. LA Opera welcomed tenor Russell Thomas as artist-in-residence this year, a creative and administrative position that goes multiple seasons. Long Beach Opera has introduced a heap of new titles: chief creative officer, minister of culture, associate artistic director.
In fact, The Industry’s Sharon is no stranger to expanding the top of an organization. His other company, Michigan Opera Theatre, where he took over as artistic director in September 2020, has this year appointed two singers to leadership roles (soprano Christine Goerke and bass-baritone Davóne Tines).
And The Industry itself has always had a collaborative ethos. The company’s most recent production, 2020’s Sweet Land, involved multiple composers, librettists, and directors. Going forward, the expanded team of artistic directors means more Industry projects — a production a year, rather than the previous setup, every other year.
“The Industry began as an experiment and is dedicated to the experimental,” Sharon said in an official statement. “The inauguration of an artistic director cooperative might be our most far-reaching experiment yet.”