Theatre and opera director Tom Diamond made his debut with Pacific Opera Victoria in October 2000 with The Barber of Seville. Of this production Times Colonist critic Adrian Chamberlain said, There's a sharpness and pluckiness to Diamond's direction – a thinking man's theatricality that transforms this chestnut into a superior production. Mr. Diamond returned to Pacific Opera to direct The Marriage of Figaro (2003), Norma (2004), Rigoletto (2006), Manon Lescaut (2006), and Cinderella (2010). In April 2016 he directs Britten's A Midsummer Night's Dream, which he has previously directed for Opera on the Avalon.
Other recent opera credits include Fidelio (Sarasota Opera, Opera Carolina), Lakmé (Calgary Opera), Turandot (Manitoba Opera), Le Coq d'or (Sarasota Opera), Le nozze di Figaro (Opéra de Montéal, Opera Lyra Ottawa), Serse (Indiana University Opera), and A Midsummer Night's Dream (Opera on the Avalon).
Following an early career as an actor and theatre director, Tom Diamond began his operatic work as a member of the Canadian Opera Company's Ensemble Studio. Career highlights include developing and directing world premieres of Timothy Sullivan's Florence, The Lady With The Lamp for the 1992 Elora Festival (Chalmers Award). His 1999 production of Squonk was an off-Broadway hit and transferred to Broadway where it won the American Theatre Wing's Hewes Award.
His stagings for the Canadian Opera Company have included internationally acclaimed productions of Giasone and La Calisto by Cavalli, a Dora award winning production of Handel's Julius Caesar , and Don Giovanni by Guiseppe Gazzaniga.
For Tapestry New Opera, Mr. Diamond developed and staged the world premiere of Chan Ka Nin's Iron Road (with librettist Mark Brownell), a bilingual (Cantonese-English) opera about the building of the Canadian railroad, which won the Dora Mavor Moore award as 2001's Outstanding New Musical. He also developed and staged Tapestry's national tour of Theresa Tova's Still the Night; several seasons of Opera to Go, and the 2009 world premiere of Omar Daniel and Alex Poch-Goldin's The Shadow.
Mr. Diamond's first short film, The Perfect Match, premiered to unanimous critical acclaim as part of Tapestry's 2008 Opera to Go at Harbourfront's World Stage Festival. A short operatic film about two lonely sock puppets, The Perfect Match has been seen at film festivals across North American and was nominated for Best Experimental Film at the Miami Short Film Festival.
Mr. Diamond is perhaps most often recognized for his participation in both seasons of the Gemini Award-winning television series Bathroom Divas.
Mr. Diamond is also one of the most renowned and sought after teachers on the continent. He has directed and coached at many universities, Conservatories and Young Artist Programmes including the Canadian Opera Company Ensemble Studio, Merola, the Eastman School of Music, the New England Conservatory, Indiana University, the Royal Conservatory of Music's Glen Gould Studio, The Centre for Opera Studies in Italy, and in summer programmes for Queen of Puddings and in Saint Andrews By The Sea, New Brunswick, with Wendy Nielsen.
Pacific Opera Victoria's La Cenerentola ... was utterly terrific. From the first strains of Rossini s overture, director Tom Diamond made clear that he was out for fun and fun alone. Instead of using the music to slowly quiet the crowd, he had them practically roaring with delight as Alidoro ... made his way through the audience ... Once on stage, Alidoro used his magic to open the pages of a giant storybook and conjure the performers one by one while the production's credits rolled above their heads like an old-time Disney movie.
Robin J. Miller, Opera Canada, Review of Pacific Opera Victoria's Cinderella, 2010
Above, Tom Diamond talks with Jenna Douglas, editor of Schmopera.com, about being an Opera Director.