The Los Angeles Opera announced February 21 that its own contract with Domingo had been renewed through 2011; the Washington Post reported at the time that the WNO had also re-signed the tenor, conductor, and administrator, but had delayed its announcement in deference to L.A. Opera.
Currently in his tenth year with WNO, Domingo joined the company in 1996 as artistic director and became general director in 2003. He also founded the Domingo-Cafritz Young Artist Program, now in its fourth year. The apprenticeship for singers has been extended to conductors and stage directors.
Future highlights at the WNO include a complete Ring cycle in 2009, conducted by Heinz Fricke and staged by Francesca Zambello. The 2006-07 season includes the American premiere of Nicholas Maw's Sophie's Choice, a new co-production of Janšcek's Jenufa, a new production of Verdi's Macbeth, and the company premiere of Bart‹k's Duke Bluebeard's Castle. This spring the WNO celebrates the Mozart anniversary with the composer's La Clemenza di Tito.
Domingo said, "I am very excited to take Washington National Opera at age 50 into the beginning of its next 50 years. I am very proud to lead this company and I am looking forward to more seasons together. I want to continue offering a wide variety of great opera, exploring unfamiliar masterpieces while maintaining the musical and dramatic excitement of the known."