March 9, 2020
The Ojai Music Festival plans ahead. With the 2020 summer season still three months away, the festival has already appointed its next two music directors. John Adams and American Modern Opera Company will oversee the new-music-making in 2021 and 2022, respectively.
Adams will be returning for the festival’s 75th year, having previously served as Ojai’s music director in 1993. He replaces pianist Mitsuko Uchida, who would have been making a return appearance as well. For the past 30 years, Ojai has been shaking things up, with a new music director every year. But return appearances aren’t unprecedented, especially in a big anniversary year.
Less common at Ojai is a group of curators, but that’s exactly what American Modern Opera Company promises in 2022. Led by composer Matthew Aucoin and director Zack Winokur, AMOC takes a collective approach, drawing on a roster of young singers, dancers, instrumentalists, and more. Guest artists from past years — soprano Julia Bullock, baritone Davóne Tines, and JACK Quartet cellist Jay Campbell — will be returning with AMOC.
And that’s all before the 2020 festival has even begun. Composer and conductor Matthias Pintscher leads this summer’s concerts, June 11–14. He brings with him Ensemble intercontemporain, the Paris-based new-music group that Pierre Boulez founded; Pintscher has been music director with the ensemble since 2013.