Kyle Marrero, Artistic Director
Dr. Kyle Marrero holds Bachelor and Master degrees in Vocal Performance from Bowling Green State University and a Doctor of Musical Arts degree from the University of Michigan, where he worked extensively with George Shirley, Martin Katz and Jerry Blackstone. Now in his 15th year as Pensacola Opera’s Artistic Director, Dr. Marrero also serves as the President of the University of West Georgia (Carrollton) where he, his wife Jane Redding and their daughter Lily reside.
Jerome Shannon, Executive Director, Music Director & Principal Conductor
Praised for his “skill and verve” (New York Times), Shannon celebrates nearly 30 years as a professional operatic pianist, vocal coach, conductor and administrator. During this time, Maestro Shannon has held leadership positions with Sarah Caldwell’s Opera Company of Boston (Artistic Administrator, Assistant Conductor, Conductor), Virginia Opera (Artistic Administrator, Associate Artistic Director, Conductor), Pensacola Opera (Music Director and Principal Conductor), Shreveport Opera (Music Director and Principal Conductor), Mobile Opera (General and Artistic Director, Principal Conductor) and the Janiec Opera Company of the Brevard Music Center (Resident Conductor and Vocal Coach).
Chandra McKern, Managing Director
Chandra McKern joined Pensacola Opera in 2015 and now serves as the Managing Director. Previously, Chandra served as the Director of Education and Outreach at Nashville Opera since 2012 where she was responsible for all aspects of the Education and Outreach Programs including the Mary Ragland Young Artist Program. Prior to Nashville Opera, Chandra was the Education Director at Pensacola Opera from 2010-2012 and spent four years working for Goldman Sachs and two years at Rockefeller University in New York. Before transitioning to arts administration, Chandra had an extensive performing career working with opera companies including Tulsa Opera, Opera Birmingham, Nevada Opera, Chicago Opera Theater and Central City Opera. Chandra holds a Bachelor of Music Degree from the University of Northern Iowa and a Master of Music from Indiana University.
Amanda Cook, Director of Education and Community Engagement
Amanda joined Pensacola Opera as the Director of Education and Engagement in November of 2012. In this role, Cook manages all aspects of the Artists in Residence Program and all other education and outreach initiatives of the company, including the From Words to Music program, summer opera camps, and production preview events. Prior to this position, Amanda worked as a Teaching Artist for three years with our From Words to Music program. She has also been an active choral member since 2000 and has performed several comprimario roles with the company. Amanda holds a Bachelor’s of Music Education from the University of West Florida. Prior to working for the Pensacola Opera, Amanda worked in Escambia County areas schools as an elementary music teacher.
Kristen Wisniewski, Director of Marketing
Kristen joined Pensacola Opera in April 2016. Originally a native of Pennsylvania, she earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Marketing from Penn State University and moved to Washington, DC to begin her professional career. Prior to this position, Kristen spent four years working for a military non-profit association as Marketing Manager, analyzing membership data and trends and creating marketing collateral. As Director of Marketing at Pensacola Opera, she is responsible for all marketing and public relations efforts, including program advertisements and sponsorship opportunities.
Kirstin Norris, Patron Services Manager
Kirstin joined the Pensacola Opera as Patron Services Manager in February 2017. She began her career in Pensacola’s arts community in 2014, at the Pensacola Children’s Chorus where she worked as the Marketing and Communications Coordinator as well as Production Coordinator. She is currently pursuing her Bachelor’s Degree in Public Relations. In the role of Patron Services Manager, Kirstin manages all ticket sales, donations, and office administration.
Peter Steenblik, Pensacola Opera Chorus Master
Dr. Peter Steenblik is the newly appointed Director of Choral Activities at the University of West Florida. Prior to coming to the gulf coast, he was the director of the Women's Chorus and Assistant to the Director of Choral Studies while working on a doctoral degree in conducting at the University of North Texas. Originally from Utah, he was Director of Choral Music at Jordan High School for 10 years. He holds a master’s degree in choral conducting and a bachelor’s in choral music education from the University of Utah.
Mary Ann Long
BOARD OF TRUSTEES
Officers and Executive Committee
Lois Benson, Chair
Antonio Terry, Vice Chair
Barbara Jackson, Secretary
Jeffrey Abram, Treasurer
Ruth Orth, Immediate Past Chair
Don H. Partington
Jan R. Miller
Dr. Nell Potter