Grethe Barrett Holby Biography
Birthday: April 26, 1948 (Taurus)
Born In: New Rochelle, New York, United States
Grethe Barrett Holby is one luminary who wears many hats as an opera and stage director, choreographer, producer, dancer, architect, and visual designer. She has been hailed for her operatic career spanning over four decades and is credited with popularizing the opera industry in North America. She has been at the forefront of the operatic scenario in the US, having established the ‘American Opera Projects’, ‘Family Opera Initiative’ and ‘Ardea Arts Incorporated’. Her professional career took off at the age of 26 when she was selected as a danseuse by the Laura Dean and Dance Company to perform at the worldwide premiere of ‘Drumming’ composed by Steve Reich. After two years, she was included in the main cast of Robert Wilson’s and Philip Glass’s ‘Einstein on the Beach’ when the opera premiered at the annual arts festival of Avignon, France. She instituted a dancing troupe, ‘Grethe Holby and Dancers’ that went on to stage ‘Metal Machine Music’ by Lou Reed. She began making forays in the operatic arena from the 1970s, starting out as an assistant designer, laying out sets for operas staged at Broadway, Brooklyn Academy of Music, and Wexford Festival Opera. Gradually, she graduated to directing and choreographing opera for several celebrated production companies. She has collaborated with renowned contemporary composers like Lisa Bielawa, Kitty Brazelton, Vincent Persichetti, and Leonard Bernstein as an opera director, choreographer, and producer.