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Wednesday, September 23, 2020
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Culture From the desk of Darren K. Woods, Fort Worth Opera

From the desk of Darren K. Woods, Fort Worth Opera

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Robert Francis
Robert Francis
Robert is a Fort Worth native and longtime editor of the Fort Worth Business Press. He is a former president of the local Society of Professional Journalists and was a freelancer for a variety of newspapers, weeklies and magazines, including American Way, BrandWeek and InformatonWeek. A graduate of TCU, Robert has held a variety of writing and editing positions at publications such as the Grand Prairie Daily News and InfoWorld. He is also a musician and playwright.

Darren K. Woods, General Director/Artistic Director Fort Worth Opera

With rehearsals in full swing for the Fort Worth Opera Festival, Woods is rarely at his L-shaped, roomy workspace. Woods wears dual hats as both general director (we found a budget sheet and notes on “what it means to be a good board member”) and artistic director (production drafts, CD tapes, research books, newspaper articles).

On his desk:

1. Eye drops. He says you can’t do this job without nice, moisturized eyes.

2. New York Times article, “Is Music the Key to Success?”

3. Postage stamp from the Metropolitan Opera sent by a patron while visiting England.

4. Hand-written note card – Woods prefers the old-school personal touch when communicating.

5. The inaugural Innovator in the Arts award from the Arts Council of Fort Worth & Tarrant County, which recognizes a leader in the arts who has had a transformative effect on an organization.

6. First draft of yet-to-be-titled 2016 production about the final night John F. Kennedy spent in Fort Worth before going to Dallas on Nov. 22, 1963. “It’s two years out. That’s how far you have to plan for opera,” Woods says.

7. Book based on the life of Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz, the feminist 17th century nun and focus of the 2014 FWO production With Blood, With Ink, beginning April 20. “Much of the research was from this book.”

Quote: “I like this sort of shaped desk; having the computer out of the way lets me sit here and actually see people.”  

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