David Blackburn founded and manages NYIOP, which scouts singers and organizes professional opera auditions around the world. Since its creation in 2002, the NYIOP Auditions have brought over 150 opera houses to hear singers in New York City, San Francisco, Beijing, Berlin, Bologna, Napoli and Vienna, as well as many other cities internationally. Mr. Blackburn also acts as a consultant to a number of major opera houses and agencies worldwide. In the past, he has served in the role of Director of Artistic Administration for the Palm Beach Opera and also as a Vice President for IMG Artists, opening their Berlin office.
In addition to his work on the NYIOP auditions and in direct association with opera houses, he has been a consultant to the Adler Fellows at the San Francisco Opera, organized the United States-based auditions for the Paris Opera Studio (Atelier Lyrique), and has taught at several prestigious summer programs including V.O.I.C.Experience in Orlando, Florida with Sherrill Milnes and at the International Vocal Arts Institute in Tel Aviv, Israel. He has taken part on the jury of the National Semi-Finals of the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions as well as several other regional and district auditions, has been invited to the Richard Tucker Foundation auditions, the recommendation committee of the Cardiff Singer of the World Competition, and the juries of the Competizione dell’Opera at the Sächsische Staatsoper “Semperoper” Dresden, official attendee of the Hans Gabor Belvedere Gesangswettbewerb in Vienna and the Shreveport Opera Singer of the Year.
He holds a Bachelor of Music summa cum laude from the University of Texas at Austin, where he was a private student of Gerard Souzay, and a Master of Music from the Manhattan School of Music. During his professional singing career he appeared with the Opera Theater of St. Louis, Portland Opera, Ft. Worth Opera and in concert in many international centers. He has also held positions at American Express, Lehmann Brothers and Credit Suisse.