Maestro Sutej, a native of Zagreb, Croatia, made his Seattle Opera debut conducting Daniel Catán’s Florencia en el Amazonas in 1998 and returned to conduct the 2005 revival. He also conducted three Puccini operas here: Madama Butterfly in 2002, La bohème in 2007, and Tosca in 2008. He returns to Seattle Opera in 2009 for Verdi’s Traviata. In the 2006 and 2007, his opera engagements included Arena di Verona, Vienna Staatsoper, Deutsche Oper Berlin, and Teatro Lirico di Cagliari. Sutej served as music director and principal conductor of Houston Grand Opera from 1993 to 1998, where he conducted many productions, including Donizetti’s Lucia di Lammermoor, Verdi’s Attila, Rigoletto, and Traviata, Gounod’s Roméo et Juliette, Bizet’s Carmen, Giordano’s Andrea Chénier, Richard Strauss’s Ariadne auf Naxos, and the world premiere of Florencia en el Amazonas in 1996. He was music director of Teatro La Fenice from 1990 to 1993 and has served as music director of the Real Orquesta Sinfónica de Sevilla for several seasons.