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New Director of Marketing and Public Relations

February 15, 2011

Contacts: Linda Schulte< Manager for Media Relations
(314) 963-4225,
Maggie Stearns, National Press Representative



New management team position begins in time for launch of single ticket sales on Saturday, February 26th


Following an extensive national search, Opera Theatre of Saint Louis has announced the appointment of Joe Gfaller as the company’s first Director of Marketing and Public Relations. 

“We are thrilled to have a professional of Joe’s caliber joining the Opera Theatre team,” said general director Timothy O’Leary.  “The creation of this position will help enable Opera Theatre to build further on its national reputation for quality, cutting-edge work while we build, broaden, and diversify our audience.”

Total attendance at Opera Theatre has grown by 5.5% in the past two years, attracting visitors from 47 states and 10 foreign countries in 2010.  The 2011 season opens on May 21 with four new productions, sung in English by the finest American singers:  Don Giovanni, The Daughter of the Regiment, Pelléas and Mélisande, and The Death of Klinghoffer.  Gfaller will join the Opera Theatre staff on February 24, prior to the launch of 2011 single ticket sales on Saturday, February 26.

Joe Gfaller comes to Opera Theatre of Saint Louis from the Alliance Theatre in Atlanta, where he has served as Associate Director of Marketing and Brand Management since 2007.  At the Alliance, Gfaller was responsible for $2.1 million in annual ticket sales and set records both for single ticket sales and for ROI on subscription renewals.  Previously, he served as Director of Marketing and Public Relations and later as Director of External Relations for Atlanta’s 7 Stages Theare, where he also oversaw record gains in the fundraising and marketing campaigns, as well as major growth in corporate support and the composition of the company’s board of directors.  Further experience includes marketing assignments for the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra, stage directing work at a dozen Atlanta theaters, as well as board leadership and volunteer positions with several Atlanta not-for-profit organizations.

A graduate of Harvard University, Gfaller served as president of the board of Harvard’s Dunster House Opera Society, and as secretary of the board of the Harvard Radcliffe Gilbert & Sullivan Players.  He began his professional career while still an undergraduate, working for the renowned American Repertory Theatre in the press and marketing departments.

As Director of Marketing and Public Relations, Joe Gfaller will be responsible for Opera Theatre’s ticket sales, ongoing work to expand audience, and work to further build the company’s profile among local and national media.  He will lead a team including Maggie Stearns as National Press Representative & Publications Director, Brian Jones as Marketing & Database Coordinator, Linda Schulte as Manager for Board & Media Relations, and the Opera Theatre box office staff.