22 November 2012

Royal Opera House Chief Tony Hall Named New General Director of Embattled BBC

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The BBC, in a state of upheaval following the fallout over the mishandled reporting of a child sex-abuse scandal, today named Royal Opera House chief executive Tony Hall as the organization's new director general.

Hall, 61, who has held his post at Covent Garden since 2001, is expected to assume his post at the head of the BBC in March. He replaces George Entwistle, who resigned from the corporation this month after having spent less than two months on the job. Entwistle's resignation arrived after Newsnight, one of the organization's flagship news programs, wrongly inculpated a Conservative Party politician in a pedophilia scandal. The November 2 Newsnight broadcast that prompted Entwistle's resignation also came on the heels of last month's revelation that longtime BBC presenter Jimmy Savile stood accused of having molested hundreds of young people over the course of his decades-long employment at the broadcaster, and that the BBC had appeared to self-censor a Newsnight inquiry reporting on the allegations.

Hall is a BBC veteran, who spent three decades at the organization prior to assuming control of the Royal Opera. The Guardian reported that Chris Patten, the chairman of the BBC Trust, is quoted as saying that Hall is "the right person to lead the BBC out of its current crisis and help rebuild public trust in the organization. 

After the announcement of his new appointment, the Royal Opera house released a statement confirming Hall's departure and reporting it immediately intends to begin a search for a successor. "Our artistic standards and reputation have never been higher and are unsurpassed around the world," said Simon Robey, chairman of the Royal Opera House Trustees in a statement to the BBC on Thursday. "Many, many more people see the extraordinary work of both companies through audience development programms, ticket pricing initiatives and digital and cinema distribution." spacer 

More information can be found at the Royal Opera House, the BBC, the Guardian and the New York Times.

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