George Christie (opera manager)

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Sir George William Langham Christie, CH (31 December 1934 – 7 May 2014) was a British opera administrator, long affiliated with Glyndebourne Opera. He was the son of John Christie and Audrey Mildmay.[1]

Christie attended Eton, and later Trinity College Cambridge, although he left without taking a degree.[2] He then worked at the Gulbenkian Foundation for 5 years, before returning to Glyndebourne. In 1962, following the death of his father, he took over the organisation.

During his tenure at Glyndebourne, Christie broadened the company's finances through increased corporate sponsorship. The company's repertoire also expanded, including commissions of new operas. He also oversaw the demolition of the old theatre and construction of the new theatre, over the period 1992-1994.[3] In addition, the company began its Glydnebourne Touring Opera (now Glyndebourne on Tour) in 1968, its first outreach ensemble. Christie retired from the company on 31 December 1999, and handed over control of the company to his son Gus Christie.

Christie was knighted in 1984 and appointed a Companion of Honour in 2001. In 2013 he won a special Lifetime Achievement Award at the Opera Awards in London.[4]

Christie married Mary Nicholson in 1958. The couple had four children, Hector, Gus, Ptolemy and Louise. His widow and children all survive him.


  1. ^ "My opera debut: Sir George Christie". Gramophone. 2012-12-11. Retrieved 2013-04-23. 
  2. ^ "Sir George Christie obituary". Telegraph. 2014-05-07. Retrieved 2014-05-07. 
  3. ^ Martin Kettle (2014-05-08). "Sir George Christie obituary". The Guardian. Retrieved 2015-01-13. 
  4. ^ "Jonas Kaufmann wins best male opera singer award". BBC News. 2013-04-23. Retrieved 2013-12-31. 

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