Conductor and Pianist Benjamin Makino is the current Music Director at Opera Memphis. Previously he was Assistant Conductor at the Long Beach Opera where he conducted that company’s highly praised productions of David Lang’s The Difficulty of Crossing a Field, Michael Nyman’s The Man Who Mistook His Wife for a Hat and Michael Gordon’s Van Gogh as well as the U.S. premieres of Gavin Bryars’ The Paper Nautilus and Stewart Copeland’s Tell Tale Heart. He also led the U.S. professional premiere of Ernest Bloch’s Macbeth at the Los Angeles harbor.
In the current season, he leads Opera Memphis’ production of Le nozze di Figaro while playing continuo, and joins Memphis’ New Ballet Ensemble for their Nut ReMix, an adaptation of Tchaikovsky’s famous Nutcracker. Additionally, he acts as Music Director for Opera Memphis’ ground-breaking 30 Days of Opera festival and makes his debut at Skylight Music Theatre leading a production of Sondheim’s epic Sweeney Todd, directed by Matthew Ozawa.