Performances & Special Events – August 2016

Ciao, Opera Mavens. Here are your opera, concert, and recital options for the month…

WEST EDGE OPERA or 510-841-1903
The Cunning Little Vixen (Janáček) – Suffused with a bewitching blend of European folk melodies and lyrical modernism, this opera has the distinction of being the only one in the repertory based on a graphic novel, and was requested by the composer as his memorial. Featuring soprano Amy Foote as the Vixen, mezzo Nicola Printz as the Fox, tenor Joseph Meyers as the Schoolmaster, baritone Nikolas Nackley as the Parson, and bass-baritone Philip Skinner (Adler 1986-87) as the Parson; sung in Czech with English supertitles and directed by Patrick Diamond with Jonathan Khuner conducting.
Sat Jul 30 at 8 pm, Sun Aug 7 at 3 pm, and Sat Aug 13 at 1 pm

Powder Her Face (Adés) – The first West Coast staging of this modern masterpiece based on the life of Margaret Campbell, the “Dirty Duchess” whose sexual exploits were the stuff of scandal & gossip in Britain during her 1963 divorce proceedings. Sung by sopranos Laura Bohn & Emma McNairy, tenor Jonathan Blalock, and baritone Hadleigh Adams (Adler 2013-14) in English with English supertitles; directed by Elkhanah Pulitzer with Mary Chun conducting.
Sun Jul 31 at 3 pm, Sat Aug 6 at 1 pm, Thu Aug 11 at 7:30 pm, and Sat Aug 13 at 8 pm

Agrippina (Handel) – This “comic prequel” to Monteverdi’s L’incoronzione di Poppea vanished for almost 200 years but is once again performed and beloved for its satirical wit and lurid tale of one of ancient Rome’s most tangled webs of intrigue. Starring sopranos Sarah Gartshore as Agrippina & Hannah Stephens as Poppea, mezzo Celine Ricci as Nero, and countertenor Ryan Belongie (Adler 2009-10) as Ottone; sung in Italian with English supertitles and directed by Mark Streshinksy with Jory Vinikour conducting from the harpsichord.
Sat Aug 6 at 8 pm, Fri Aug 12 at 8 pm, and Sun Aug 14 at 3 pm

All performances at Oakland’s Abandoned Train Station at 16th Street and Wood
Tickets for individual operas: $96 Gold Seats (reserved), $57 Silver Seats (general), $19 Bronze Seats (back row, available one week in advance via website only)

The Audition – Enjoy dinner and/or a glass of wine while listening to young, classically trained singers embarking on professional careers perform their fall audition repertoires; free performance, just call restaurant (415-252-1110) to make reservation.
Mon Aug 1 at 7:30pm, Caffe Delle Stelle, 395 Hayes St, SF

MEROLA OPERA PROGRAM or 415-565-6492
Cosi fan tutte
(Mozart) – The battle of the sexes rages on in this witty take on romance and fidelity; Mark Morash conducting. Tickets: $45-65
Thu Aug 4* at 7:30pm and Sat Aug 6 at 2pm
* Free pre-show talk by director Ted Huffman on Thu Aug 4 at 6:30pm

Grand Finale & Receptions – Hear these amazing young artists perform arias and scenes from favorite operas before heading out into the world; Rory Macdonald conducting. Tickets $25-45, Students $15.
Start your evening in grand style with an open bar and light nibbles at our new Grand Night Mix (6pm, Veterans Building Green Room, $25), or toast their successes at a celebratory post-performance reception (Veterans Building Green Room, $50)
Note: reception tickets sold separately
Sat Aug 20 at 7:30pm, War Memorial Opera House, 301 Van Ness Ave, San Francisco

FESTIVAL OPERA or 925-944-9610
Abduction from the Seraglio (Mozart) – Star Trek inspired production & revised English libretto by director Josh Shaw. Follow the adventures of ‘Captain’ James T. Belmonte (tenor Brian Cheney) as he sets off on a mission to rescue kidnapped crew members ‘Lieutenants’ Constanza & Blondie (sopranos Shawnette Sulker & Sara Duchovnay) and ‘Mister’ Pedrillo (tenor Robert Norman) from an all-too-familiar set of villains (including bass Kevin Thompson as Osmin), Michael Morgan conducting.
Fri Aug 5, Sat Aug 6, and Mon Aug 8 at 8pm; Tue Aug 9 at 2pm
Regents’ Theatre, Valley Center for Performing Arts, Holy Names University, Oakland

VERISMO OPERA or 707-864-5508
Il Trovatore (Verdi) – Set in the early 15th century, three intertwining sub-plots tell the story of the revenge-minded gypsy Azucena, the mysterious troubadour Manrico, his rival the Count de Luna, and Leonora, the woman they both love; performed by rotating casts with piano and chamber orchestra. Tickets: $30 General, $25 Seniors, $20 Students (children under 12 yrs free); available through Brown Paper Tickets.
Sat Aug 13 at 7:30pm and Sun Aug 14 at 2pm, Hillside Club, 2286 Cedar St, Berkeley
Sat Aug 20 & 27, Sep 3 & 10 at 7:30pm and Sun Aug 21 & 28, Sep 4 & 11 at 2pm,
Bay Area Stage Theater, 515 Broadway St, Vallejo

Opera in the Vineyard – Bring your own picnic, sip exclusive wines, explore the gardens, and enjoy a live performance in the round of operatic & Broadway musical entertainment at this private venue not open to the public; $40 per person in advance, $50 at the door, $320 table for 8.
Sun Aug 14 at 4pm, Nella Terra Cellars, 5005 Sheridan Rd, Sunol

Verdi’s Requiem
– First performed in 1874, this blood-stirring and immortal mass for the dead was inspired by the passings of author Alessandro Manzoni and composer Gioacchino Rossini; Verdi’s intent was not to compose ecclesiastical music, but to pay tribute to these two cultural giants of the day. Featuring soloists soprano Hope Briggs, contralto Edith Dowd, tenor Noah Stewart, and bass-baritone Eugene Brancoveanu (Adler 2005-06). Tickets $29-35, available through City Box Office.
Fri Aug 19 & Sat Aug 20 at 8pm, Davies Symphony Hall, 201 Van Ness Ave, SF

…and here are some special extracurricular opera-tunities:

Marin Chapter: Champagne Gala – Featuring the Adler Fellows in concert and guest speaker SFO General Director Matthew Shilvock; $50 per person, for more information contact Anne Zucchi (415-924-9352 or
Sun Aug 7 at 2pm, San Domenico Music Conservatory, 1500 Butterfield Rd, San Anselmo

Peninsula Chapter: An Afternoon with Bright Sheng – SFO Dramaturg Kip Cranna will interview Bright Sheng, composer and co-librettist of Dream of the Red Chamber; after the interview enjoy a musical performance and partake of wine & hors d’oeuvres in the garden. $50-$150 per person, reservations required by Aug 15; for more information contact Judy Kahn (650-948-8881 or
Sun Aug 21 at 2pm, private residence (directions emailed with reservation confirmation), Palo Alto

East Bay Chapter: Getting Acquainted with Bright Sheng – Sheng, in conversation with Kip Cranna, will describe the creation and content of his work. $65 per person ($25 tax-deductible), reservations required by Aug 21; for more information contact Silvia Lin (925-838-9255 or
Sun Aug 28 at 11:30 am, Sequoyah Country Club, 4550 Heafey Rd, Oakland


Performances & Special Events – July 2016

Ciao, Opera Mavens. Feel free to explore & enjoy any or all of this month’s offerings!

GOLDEN GATE OPERA or 415-339-9546
Lincoln: The African-American Connection
– New one-act opera telling the story of how gospel music influenced Lincoln to sign the Emancipation Proclamation; starring Gabriel Manro as Abraham Lincoln, Michael Orlinski as his aide Sam Everyman, Krista Wigle as his wife Mary Todd Lincoln, Lori Willis as her friend the black designer Elizabeth Keckley, and Noah Griffin as Frederick Douglass / Narrator joined by the Lighthouse Gospel Choir. Tickets start at $10, available through Eventbrite
Sun July 3 at 2:30pm, Fort Baker Parade Grounds, 601 Murray Circle, Sausalito

LIEDER ALIVE! or 415-561-0100
Schumann’s Dichterliebe, Brahms and Strauss – Baritone Sol Jin (Merola 2015) and pianist John Parr in collaboration with the Merola Opera Program.
Tue July 5 at 6pm
Sommer-Liederabend – Joint presentation with Wagner Society of Northern California: program of Berg, Britten, Debussy, R.Strauss, Wagner and Wolf by soprano Mirella Hagen and pianist Robin Engelen.
Fri July 8 at 6pm
Both programs at Noe Valley Ministry, 1021 Sanchez St, San Francisco
Tickets: $75 Premium Reserved Seating, $35 General Admission, $15 Students (all prices include reception with artists and free-flowing bubbly)

MEROLA OPERA PROGRAM or 415-565-6492
Schwabacher Summer Concert – A thrilling evening of scenes from beloved operas including Lohengrin, Arabella, Le Comte Ory, and Dialogues des Carmélites presented by this year’s Merolini (tomorrow’s opera stars)! Tickets $25-40, available through the SFO Box Office (415-864-3330)
Thu July 7* at 7:30pm & Sat July 9 at 2pm
Transformations (Susa) – What happens to your favorite fairy tale characters after they go into the woods? Composer Conrad Susa set Grimm’s fairy tales to the poetry of Pulitzer Prize winner Anne Sexton for an irreverent look at what happens after happily ever after; performed in English with English supertitles. Tickets: $45-65, available through the SFO Box Office (415-864-3330)
Thu July 21* at 7:30pm & Sat July 23# at 2pm
Both programs presented at the San Francisco Conservatory of Music, 50 Oak St, SF
* FREE Opera Overture Directors Talk at 6:30pm before this performance
# FREE Opera on the Couch discussion by the SF Center for Psychoanalysis after this performance

OPERA SAN JOSE or 408-437-4450
Opera in the Park – Join us for a FREE outdoor concert featuring OSJ resident and guest artists performing selections from the 2016-17 season (Lucia di Lammermoor, Barber of Seville, Silent Night, and La Boheme).
Sun July 10 at 6:30pm, Frank Bramhall Park, 1320 Willow St, San Jose

POCKET OPERA or 415-972-8934
La Vie Parisienne (Offenbach) – A joyous paean to the City of Lights: tourists and natives alike on a madcap pleasure binge as the high and the lowly switch places, a wild ride on a merry-go-round sparked by wickedly intoxicating melodies!
Tickets: $45 Adult, $42 Senior, $15 Youth
Sun July 10 at 2pm, Hillside Club, 2286 Cedar St, Berkeley
Sun July 17 & 24 at 2pm, Florence Gould Theatre, Legion of Honor, 100 34th Ave, SF

Wanderlust – As summer is upon us, we all feel a little restless in our day-to-day routine and want to get out and explore new and exciting places; join us on a musical journey through art songs and arias that will hopefully awaken your own sense of wanderlust, performed by young, classically trained singers embarking on their professional careers. Call 415-252-1110 for dinner reservations.
Mon July 11 at 7:30pm, Caffe Delle Stelle, 395 Hayes St, San Francisco

L’incoronazione di Poppea
(Monteverdi) – Enter a world of political intrigue, sex, and the quest for power; set in modern day, this brand new production will push the boundaries of gender, featuring an almost entirely female cast! Tickets: $35 Premium Reserved, $25 General Admission, $15 Senior or Under 30
Fri July 15 & Sat July 16 at 8pm, EXIT Theater, 156 Eddy St, San Francisco

Opera in the Vineyard – Casual “bring your own picnic” event; enjoy a glass of wine (available for purchase) and hear your favorite arias sung by our talented singers! Tickets: $40 in advance, $50 at the door, $320 table for eight.
Sun July 17 at 5pm, Retzlaff Vineyards, 1356 So Livermore Ave, Livermore

The Marriage of Figaro (Mozart) – First of three FREE Opera in the Park performances of this family-friendly masterpiece, sung in Italian with spoken English dialogue; accompanied by Tamami Honma and members of the Winchester Orchestra, Michael DiGiacinto conducting.
Sun July 17 at 6pm, Redwood City Town Square, 2200 Broadway, Redwood City

SOLO OPERA or 925-943-7469
Opera in the Park – Bring the entire family, a blanket, and a picnic lunch to enjoy an afternoon of opera’s best-loved arias, duets, and ensembles by some of your favorite local opera singers: sopranos Cass Panuska & Diane Squires, mezzos Silvie Jensen & Alexandra Jerinic, tenors Alexander Boyer & Christopher Jackson, and baritones Torlef Borsting & William O’Neill. FREE Admission, Free Parking, BART and Handicapped Accessible; sponsored by the Orinda Rotary Club.
Sun July 24 at 4pm, Orinda Community Park, 28 Orinda Way, Orinda

FRESNO GRAND OPERA or 559-442-5699
Gospel on Van  Ness – A new addition to the Van Ness Series, this concert features the Fresno Grand Opera Chorus and Soloists performing gospel and spiritual favorites and will include a special appearance by professional gospel singer Keysha Burns and her jazz quartet. Tickets: $50 Reserved Seating, $35 General Admission; available here or by calling number above.
Sun July 24 at 5pm, The Big Red Church, 2131 Van Ness Blvd, Fresno

LYRIC THEATRE or 408-986-1455
El Capitan (Souza) – Lively operetta in three acts by the “March King” that ran for over four years in New York; semi-staged in English with supertitles.
Tickets: $26 Adults, $10 Children 17 & under
Sat July 30 at 8pm & Sun July 31 at 2pm
Fremont High School, 1279 Sunnyvale-Saratoga Rd, Sunnyvale

WEST EDGE OPERA or 510-841-1903
Festival 2016: Cunning Little Vixen, Powder Her Face, and Agrippina
July 30-August 14 at the Abandoned Train Station, 1405 Wood St at 16th, Oakland
(details to follow in August Performances post)


OSJ & SFO Special Events

Ciao, Opera Mavens! Here are a few special events coming your way soon:

2016-17 Season Preview / Lecture
– Join General Director Larry Hancock and OSJ artists as they present a preview of the 2016-17 season (Lucia di Lammermoor, Barber of Seville, Silent Night, Boheme). Cost: $15 per person, advance reservations required; go to or call 408-866-2014 to register.
Fri Jun 10 at 5:30pm, Ainsley House, 300 Grant St, Campbell

Ivy Alliance & Seven Sisters Night at the Opera: Carmen – SFO is pleased to offer alumni, friends, and family 30% off regular ticket prices for this performance of Carmen starring Ginger Costa-Jackson, Erika Grimadi, Brian Jadge, and Michael Sumuel; buy tickets at and enter Offer Code IVYCAR30. Event includes a complimentary wine reception and private talk on the Dress Circle South Promenade (3 flights up from the Lobby level) of WMOH; we are very excited to have SFO dramaturg Kip Cranna offering insights into the evening’s production!
Fri Jun 17, 6pm reception, 7:30pm performance

Stanford Night at the Opera: Don Carlo – SFO presents an outstanding international cast in Verdi’s grand historical drama. Prior to the performance join your fellow alums on the Dress Circle North Promenade for a no-host gathering (cash bar) and private talk with Kip Cranna, PhD ’84; event co-sponsored by Stanford Women’s Club of San Francisco and Cardinal Young Alumni. Purchase tickets and select seats at; an automatic 30% discount will be applied at the time of purchase.
Sat Jun 18, 5:30pm reception, 7pm performance (note early curtain time)


Special Invitation to Opera Mavens

Ciao, Opera Mavens. We’ve been invited to sit in the Friends and Family Section (Club Level) for SF Opera’s Carmen simulcast at the Ballpark on July 2. “Club Level” provides the best view and sound at AT&T Park.

The free Ballpark opera is such great fun! We go every year. There’s nothing like beer, opera, and 30,000 cheering opera fans on a warm July evening. Here are the special instructions from the SF Opera for joining in:

“You’re cordially invited to join us for our free AT&T Park Simulcast of Bizet’s CARMEN on Saturday evening, July 2nd at 7:30pm.  It’s just a few weeks away!

The performance will be led by Carlo Montanaro and stars Irene Roberts, Brian Jagde, Ellie Dehn and Zachary Nelson. It will be simulcast live from the stage of the War Memorial Opera House to a crowd of thousands at the ballpark. Please note: This production contains violence, nudity and sexual situations. Parental discretion advised.

We would be delighted to have you with us for this spectacular San Francisco tradition, and invite you and your friends to sit in our Friends and Family sections on the Club Level, with a prime view of the 103-foot high-definition screen.

Please sign up online for access to our reserved Friends and Family seating section on the Club Level.

  • Go to:
  • Select the number of attendees (up to 4).
  • Enter the access code FAF16
  • Click the “Register” button and log in or create an account to sign up.
  • Print out the barcoded confirmation page – that page will be your entry pass.

When you come to the park, remember to bring the confirmation page with you:

  • Please arrive early for best seating; doors open at 5pm.
  • Enter the park through the FIELD CLUB ENTRANCE to the left of the Willie Mays Gate.
  • Giants staff will tear your confirmation at the Gate; keep the top portion to show for entry to the CLUB LEVEL.
  • Friends & Family seats will be held until 7pm, at which time they will be released for public use.

We look forward to welcoming you to this great celebration of two great San Francisco institutions.  Where else do you get to watch opera while enjoying hot dogs and garlic fries? For more information about the event, please visit

See you at the ballpark!


Marcia Lazer

Director of Marketing

San Francisco Opera