- Associated Press - Friday, October 3, 2014

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) - The general director of the San Francisco Opera says he plans to retire at the end of its 2015-2016 season.

David Gockley announced Friday that he would step down as the company’s chief executive in July 2016, when he will celebrate his 73rd birthday. Gockley came to San Francisco in January 2006 after leading the Houston Grand Opera for 34 years.

Gockley has been recognized for his efforts to make opera accessible to a broader and more diverse audience. In San Francisco, he pioneered public broadcasts of San Francisco Opera performances to a park near City Hall and the baseball stadium where the Giants play.

He says that he plans to schedule program and cast the company’s productions through the 2017-18 season given the long lead time operas require.



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