John Copley

John Copley


Representation: General Management (excl. North America)


John Copley first appeared with the Royal Opera at the age of 15 as an actor and later became their Principal Resident Director.   He has directed opera throughout the world during a career that spans over 50 years.   John has worked with all the great singers and conductors and continues to share his expertise with young singers in his productions for the Royal Academy and Royal College of Music.


Full Biography


John Copley has directed opera in most of the world’s major opera houses.  He was Resident Director at the Royal Opera House Covent Garden, where he worked on many new productions with the world’s greatest conductors, Sir Georg Solti, Sir Colin Davis, Carlos Kleiber, Sir John Pritchard and many other distinguished colleagues.   Among his greatest successes there were Mozart’s Le Nozze di Figaro and Cosi fan Tutte that remained in the repertoire for 21 years and 24 years respectively.  His acclaimed production of La Boheme is still in repertoire after nearly 30 years.

John Copley staged 13 new productions at English National Opera, many with Sir Charles Mackerras and Dame Janet Baker, including the award-winning Julius Caesar that went on to San Francisco, Geneva and finally the Metropolitan Opera in New York City, where it has been recently revived (as Giulio Cesare) yet again.

He works regularly with all the major American opera companies including the Metropolitan, Chicago Lyric, San Francisco, Santa Fe, Dallas and San Diego and was for many years a regular director with the Canadian Opera Company.

In Australia he has directed more than twenty-five productions for both the Australian Opera in Sydney and the Victoria State Opera in Melbourne.

European productions include Greek National Opera Macbeth (Athens Festival), Madama Butterfly and Otello.  He returned to Athens in 2001 for a new production of Il Corsaro.  John has also directed in Munich, Berlin, Geneva, Brussels, Amsterdam, Drottningholm, Stockholm and Gothenburg.  In 2008 he directs a new production of The Merry Widow for English National Opera.

He has acted, choreographed and designed regularly throughout his long and varied career.

Promoters please note:
if you wish to include this biography in a concert programme etc, please contact Hazard Chase to ensure that you receive the most up to date version.
Email: Caroline Challis



La Bohème – The end of an era

May 19th, 2015

John Copley’s iconic production staged for the last time at Covent Garden

Read More

Artist Manager

Sue Nicholls (Cambridge)
01223 706023

Assistant Artist Manager

Caroline Challis (Cambridge)
01223 706414