Alcántara, Theo, Spanish-born American conductor; b. Cuenca, April 16, 1941. He obtained diplomas in piano and composition at the Madrid Cons., and in conducting at the Salzburg Mozarteum. After conducting at the Frankfurt am Main Opera (1964–66), he was director of the opera workshop and sym. orch. at the Univ. of Mich. (1967–74). From 1973 to 1978 he was music director of the Grand Rapids Sym. Orch., a position he also held with the Western Mich. Opera Assn. (1973–79). On May 27, 1978, he made his Metropolitan Opera debut in N.Y. conducting Don Giovanni. He was music director of the Phoenix Sym. Orch. from 1978 to 1989, and then served as its laureate conductor from 1989 to 1993. From 1981 to 1984 he also was artistic director of the Music Academy of the West in Santa Barbara. In 1987 he became principal conductor of the Pittsburgh Opera, and concurrently served as artistic director of the Caracas International Opera Festival (1990–93) and artistic director and principal conductor of the Bilbao Sym. Orch. (from 1993). He appeared as a guest conductor with various orchs. and opera companies in the U.S. and abroad.
—Nicolas Slonimsky/Laura Kuhn/Dennis McIntire