The formation of the new company was announced in August by Australian arts minister Mary Delahunty. It will be funded by the A$7.6 million, over four years, that the government has earmarked for the development of opera in Melbourne.
The state has suffered a decline in opera performances—and a concomitant loss of opportunities for performers, designers, and musicians—since the Victoria State Opera merged with the Australian Opera to form the Sydney-based Opera Australia in 1996.
Businessman Michael Roux has been appointed chair of the new company, and will be in charge of finding a music director. He is also working on a series of models for possible programming for the company, and hopes to announce next year's schedule before Christmas.
Gill, who is currently director of OzOpera, Opera Australia's touring company, said that Victorian Opera would work with OA to avoid redundant repertoires, and that the new company would specialize in contemporary works and different styles of opera.
He also denied rumors that he has been planted in the new company as a secret representative of OA.