SF Opera hits the century mark; leaders envision a dynamic future – Times-Herald

The opera is basically a sung play, an entertainment with music with a history of over 400 years, for everyone. The San Francisco Opera wants to prove it next season as the company pays tribute to its first 100 years as its leaders look to what they hope will have a dynamic future.

Looking at the programming for the 2022-23 centenary season, the future looks to be here and as one of the nation’s leading opera companies, it includes a constant commitment to innovation.

Consider the opening weekend, Sept. 9-11, with a gala concert on opening night and a traditional Opera Ball on Friday; The world premiere of John Adams’ “Antony and Cleopatra” on Saturday; and the annual Free Opera in the Park (Robin Williams Meadow at Golden Gate Park) on Sunday, all led by music director Eun Sun Kim.

Perhaps for the company (and the Bay Area and the Bay Area and the nation that is emerging from the wave of the last wave variant) it is the return of eight major operas, additional concerts and community events until July 1, 2023.

In addition to Adams’ new opera (September 10-October 5), based on Shakespeare and classical sources and directed by Elkhanah Pulitzer, she is also proud to have premiered a seasonally commissioned opera, “The Last Dream of Frida and Diego” (Frida and Diego’s Last Dream) Gabriela Winner of the Pulitzer Prize for composer Lena Frank Bay and playwright Nile Cruz. It will be held June 13-30, 2023 (but has its world premiere at the San Diego Opera in October). The story? Three years after the death of a famous Mexican woman artist (portrait of mezzo-soprano Daniel Mack), she wants to see her sick and lonely husband, her famous artist and muralist Diego Rivera (Mexican tenor Alfredo Daza) once again, and the underworld. helps him.

Then there are the company’s new productions: Verdi’s “La Traviata” (November 11 to December 3), which tells the story of the courtesan’s death from consumption; and Gluck’s “Orpheus and Eurydice” (November 15 to December 1), about a man who vows to bury his wife; and a new co-production of Puccini’s “Madame Butterfly” (June 3 to July 1, 2023) with companies in Tokyo, Dresden, and Copenhagen, a well-known story of a Japanese girl who falls in love with a U.S. military. he takes the officer and his child, but cannot resist the urge to take care of him.

In addition, the seasons are XX. Poulenc’s “Conversations of the Carmelites” (October 15-30) about an order of nuns who were guillotined individually during the French Revolution; and Strauss’s “Die Frau ohne Schatten,” in English, “The Woman Without a Shadow” (June 4-28, 2023), the story of two loving couples who experience emotional and spiritual salvation. Both return to War Memorial Opera House, Van Ness Ave. No. 301, where they had their U.S. premieres.

Also, Tchaikovsky’s “Eugene Onegin” (September 25 to October 14), based on the poem Pushkin, tells the story of a girl moved by the love that the beautiful Onegin rejected. The performances indicate that he returned to the Russian opera company after 14 years.

In addition to the 100th anniversary concert (June 16, 2023), other centennial celebrations include “Bohème Out of the Box”; “The Traviata Encounter” (November 19); open house (October 23); Historical Recordings Project; “The Future Is Now: Adlers in Concert” (December 2); At the San Francisco Opera Chorus Concert (December 4); community stories and exhibitions.

The company has a well-known history of innovation and has released many singers who made their debut in opera in the last quarter of a century and achieved international fame.

In a press release, CEO Matthew Shilvock said: “From the moment Gaetano Merola (the company’s founder) lifted the first curtain of the San Francisco Opera, this has been a company of opportunity, excellence and an innovative spirit. Our centenary will pay tribute to the outstanding people who shaped our first hundred years, and will also be a starting point for some of the most exciting creative opportunities of the future.

“As we begin our second century, we want to be a place where our community can feel that their stories are being told, where we are energizing new conceptions of art, and continuing to create experiences so profound that they resonate with life.”

Keith Geeslin, president of the San Francisco Opera Association, added: “Our outstanding community of subscribers and donors has sustained this company as a living and creative force and as a leader in the international opera world for a century.”

Now in his first season as the company’s music director, Kim ushered in a new era for the company, with Puccini’s “Tosca” beginning to return to live performances at the War Memorial Opera House last August. He also conducted the company’s new production of Beethoven’s “Fidelio,” two concerts with the San Francisco Opera Orchestra, and will return to the podium this summer for a Verdi celebration (June 30, 2022). Last November, the South Korean director made his New York Metropolitan Opera debut and received rave reviews for Puccini’s “La Bohème.”

“The powerful language of music encourages us to better understand our world, and to each other,” Kim said. “I am very proud to be a part of the legacy of the first 100 years of the San Francisco Opera, and I look forward to participating in this celebration with our community in a variety of ways this year. San Francisco has helped, nurtured and energized this company. At the same time, we as musicians will continue to strive for the highest levels of artistic excellence so that this rich heritage can be passed on to future generations. ”

For the centennial season, Kim will conduct “Antony and Cleopatra”, “Dialogues of the Carmelites”, “La Traviata” “Madame Butterfly”, Opening Night Concert, Opera in the Park, resident artist Adler Fellows and be among the directors of the 100th anniversary concert .

For more information, including seasonal subscriptions and tickets, visit www.sfopera.com/100 or call (415) 864-3330.

SF Opera hits the century mark; leaders envision a dynamic future – Times-Herald Source link SF Opera hits the century mark; leaders envision a dynamic future – Times-Herald

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