Chicago, IL


One of world’s most successful opera companies, Lyric Opera of Chicago seeks an innovative marketing professional to maximize ticket sales revenue, and drive participation in Lyric’s extensive public and educational programming.

Lyric Opera is poised at the beginning of a new era of greatness.

Steeped in almost 60 years of ground-breaking work by diverse artists, Lyric and its new leadership team continue to build a reputation for excellence and audience engagement.  Just four leaders have held the post of General Director, with dynamic innovator Anthony Freud assuming the position in 2011.  He is joined by internationally renowned conductor Sir Andrew Davis (just the second Music Director in Lyric’s history), and celebrated soprano Renée Fleming, who recently joined Lyric as the organization’s Creative Consultant.  A new energy exists around this great team and company, an energy that has already had a tangible impact on Lyric’s performances, programs and operations. Together with Lyric’s staff and board, Freud, Davis and Fleming are introducing a groundbreaking new strategic plan that includes (and demands), new programming, new marketing and new innovation geared to developing new audiences.

Over the next years Lyric will offer performances on the mainstage of the Civic Opera House as well as throughout the Chicago metro area, delivering a balance of traditional opera, an annual Broadway musical, and innovative and experimental programs.  Such activities are designed to thrill current and develop new audiences, with the Director of Marketing playing a critical role in driving attendance and earned income though:

  • A strong triple-bottom-line emphasis on Lyric’s artistic excellence, public and audience engagement, and financial responsibility.
  • Exceptional performances, including 2012/13 productions of Elektra, Don Pasquale, La Bohème, Rigoletto, A Streetcar Named Desire, among others.  Lyric has also announced the World Premiere of Bel Canto for the 2015/16 season, and will ensure that world premieres remain an important part of its future.
  • Lyric Unlimited Initiative, a series of projects combining classic operatic arts and popular culture in an engaging mix that attracts new audiences of diverse ages, backgrounds and interests into the Lyric fold.  Examples include presentation of the world’s first Mariachi Opera, collaboration with the Second City comedy troupe, and a strong partnership with the Merit School of Music to involve Chicago youth in opera.
  • Ryan Opera Center Lyric’s Patrick G. and Shirley W. Ryan Opera Center is recognized as offering one of the world’s premier artist training programs for opera singers.  More than 500 singers audition annually for 12 admittance slots.
  • Audience Education, delivered through Lyric’s Education Department that engage more diverse audiences through interesting operatic arts education experiences.

Having balanced its budget for 24 of the last 25 years, Lyric currently has an operating budget of $65 m funded by ticket revenues of $30m, contributed revenue of $23m, other operating revenue of $8m, and the balance through a reserve fund purposefully set-aside for that purpose by leaders who combine a strong artistic vision with prudent financial management. A new capital campaign to further ensure Lyric’s longevity long into the future is now being launched. The Lyric marketing budget averages $3.8 million annually, exclusive of personnel expense. The Marketing Department includes 6 professionals responsible for subscription and individual-ticket advertising, corporate sales, group sales, digital and social media marketing, and e-commerce.  Additionally, 7 full-time staff is assigned to Ticketing Services, which reports to the Director of Marketing.

Reporting to General Director Anthony Freud and working with board members, staff, and diverse partners and vendors, the Director of Marketing will lead, plan, direct and implement strategies that maximize Lyric’s ticket sales revenue and program attendance. Digital marketing will be key to Lyric’s future audience development. The Director will manage, recruit and retain a small marketing department of top-notch staff and contractors capable of supporting Lyric’s marketing, sales and web marketing needs into the future, and will play a key role in the General Director’s leadership team.

A complete Position Description can be found here. For further information, please contact Barbara Kimport or Mark Oppenheim at or visit

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