The Washington National Opera is a world-class opera company in Washington, D.C., USA, Its artistic director is the Spanish tenor, Plácido Domingo.
The Washington National Opera was established in 1957 as the Opera Society of Washington by Day Thorpe, the music critic of the Washington Star. Paul Callawy, the choirmaster and organist of the Washington Cathedral, was its first music director.
Many prominent Washingtonians gravitated enthusiastically to the Opera Society and devoted years of their lives to making the Washington Opera a successful undertaking. Paul Callawy the choirmaster and organist of the Washington Cathedral was named the first music director. Some of the early contributors of both time and later financial assistance included David Lloyd Kreeger, who later became President of the Opera Board. Roger Stevens, as the Chairman of the Board of Kennedy Center invited the Washinton Opera into the Kennedy Center where it remains today. Martin Feinstein, one of the early directors of the Washington Opera, brought in many wonderful young singers, long before their first appearances at the Metropolitan Opera. These fine young singers included Jerry Hadley and Denyce Graves (in a small role that she is likely to never play again - Maddalena in Rigoletto).
The Washington area was the target of at least one of the four hijacked planes in the September 11, 2001 attacks.
Washington is surrounded by the states of Virginia (on its southwest side, and a small part of its northwest one) and Maryland (on its southeast and northeast sides, and most of its northwest one); it interrupts those states' common border, which is the Potomac River both upstream and downstream from the District.
Washington is the home of numerous national landmarks and is one of the most popular tourist destinations in the United States.
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