A native of New York City, Eric is known on both sides of the Atlantic as a stage director, producer and cultural entrepreneur. As a director his signature is the creation of a body of original works based on classic texts and subjects that defy formal definitions and create a synthesis between opera, music, drama and dance
These include Messiah, the most controversial event ever to have taken place at the Utrecht Early Music Festival, Christ Lag in Todesbanden, the most controversial and scandalous work ever to have been performed at the Regensburg Early Music Festival, and numerous radical productions for children which he created during his tenure as Artistic Director and CEO of The Ark in Dublin, Europe’s first major cultural centre for young people.
His works have frequently evoked heated critical debate in the international media as well as winning paludits for their boldness of invention and the uniqueness of concept and interpretation. The New York Times has said that Mr Fraad is “…on another planet”.
He was founder and artistic director of Opera at the Academy, New York’s most critically acclaimed opera producing organization of the 1980s and early 1990s where he co-produced several works with Joseph Papp, the legendary founder of the Public Theater. He also served as artistic director of Millennial Arts Productions for which he created a series provocative productions in the late 1990s.
He is the founder and director of Heresy Records and co-artistic director of eX, the Irish based early music ensemble known for its elegant staged concerts, productions and recordings. He is also co-artistic director of META, a company he co-founded with composer Roger Doyle to create and produce new forms of opera and music theatre for the 21st century. For META he staged Doyle’s first opera, The Death By Fire Of Giordano Bruno in 2013 at Kilkenny Arts Festival, Dublin Theatre Festival and the Mermaid Arts Centre.
Eric holds an MBA from Columbia Business School. He has collaborated and been associated with numerous artists throughout his career including the fashion designers Hussein Chalayan and Mary McFadden, directors Christopher and David Alden, writers John Banville, Roddy Doyle and Jocelyn Clarke, music directors, Christopher Hogwood, Konrad Junghanel, Pedro Memelsdorf and cultural icons, Macolm McClaren and Andy Warhol.
He is married to the singer Caitríona O’Leary with whom he has two boys, Davy and Zack. He lives in Malahide, a village on the Irish Sea near Dublin.