Brendan Cooke was appointed General Director of OperaDelaware, America’s 11th oldest opera company, in June 2012. Cooke joined OperaDelaware from the Baltimore Concert Opera, a company he founded in 2008 in response to the collapse of the Baltimore Opera Company. Cooke and his board of directors launched this startup opera company with $700 in personal funds. Under Cooke’s leadership, Baltimore Concert Opera has experienced exponential growth since 2009, and is entering its sixth season in 2014-2015 with much larger annual budget. He earned a Bachelor’s degree in Music Education from Loyola University in New Orleans. He holds a Master’s degree in Music from the Peabody Conservatory of the Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, where he was a student of the renowned bass-baritone John Shirley-Quirk. After founding the Baltimore Concert Opera, Cooke continued his career in Arts Administration as a member of the marketing department for the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra.