Michigan Opera Theatre Pays Tribute to David DiChiera

It is with heavy hearts that the Michigan Opera Theatre shared the news that their beloved founder and artistic director David DiChiera has been diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. The theatre website reads: "David is and has been a driving force in the opera community and the city of Detroit, pushing the art form forward and using it to add culture to the city. David continues to be vitally engaged with our company and we look forward to celebrating his legacy with our season-ending production of David's opera 'Cyrano' and the Grand Salute, a long-planned and uplifting celebration of David's life work."
The theatre shares a personal letter from DiChiera with the community.

{ITAL Dear Friends,

Over the past two years I've been planning for my formal departure from the opera company and the opera house that I've built along with the love and help of so many of you and your fellow opera and dance devotees. For me it has been a true labor of love, one in which I've been given back so much more than I've given. Saying "so long" is bittersweet to say the least, but the time is right for me to move on.
In recent months I've had the pleasure and excitement of watching as plans take shape for the incredible Gala weekend being planned in my honor in May. The weekend will be a wonderful capstone to my career as well as a fitting kickoff for the exciting future of Michigan Opera Theatre. I hope you will be able to share it with me.
Life, of course, is never predictable. As someone once said, we don't lead our own lives; they lead us. And often they surprise us, as mine has recently done.
I have been diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. But I fully intend to be at the May celebration. I don't want that Gala to be turned into a memorial. I want to be there, to see all my friends and family, to personally thank you for your love and support, and to truly celebrate the future of Michigan Opera Theatre and the City of Detroit with you. The opera house and the opera company will stand for many years as my legacy to Detroit and to opera and, with the exception of my family, they will always be my proudest achievement.
At 82 years I have lived an unbelievably rich and rewarding life and when the time comes I'll leave it with few regrets. Your friendship is among my greatest treasures. You will always be in my heart and I hope some part of me will always be in yours. I look forward to seeing you at the Gala and to sharing a great evening together.

David DiChiera}

For more about DiChiera, his legacy and the Grand Salute on May 19, visit the Michigan Opera Theatre website.