Ciao, Opera Mavens. We’re guessing many of you are as confused and concerned as we are about the COVID-19 pandemic and its effects on our personal health and lifestyles along with the welfare of local performing artists and organizations. Given the recent cancellations of so many events, we wanted to make you aware of two opera-tunities this weekend that may not have previously been on your radar screens or calendars, should you choose to venture out and lift your spirits with a little culture!

The Phénix Opera Company in Pacifica will present three more performances of their double-bill of one-act operas: Lucrezia by Ottorino Respighi and Gianni Schicchi by Giacomo Puccini. The first piece is of particular interest, as it has only been staged once before in the U.S. (New York City, 1979). Tickets are just $35, available through Brown Paper Tickets.
Fri Mar 13 & Sat Mar 14 at 8pm, Sun Mar 15 at 2pm
Black Box Theater, Spindrift School of Performing Arts, 1053 Crespi Dr, Pacifica
(Company comment regarding the venue: “The house is small, so less chance of unwanted interactions.”)

Livermore Valley Opera is also doing Gianni Schicchi, but in conjunction with A Florentine Tragedy by Alexander Zemlinsky (composer of Der Zwerg which SFO is presenting next season). The combined cast features local favorites Anush Avetisyan, Ryan Bradford, Liisa Dávila, Michael Day (Merola 2019), Kirk Eichelberger (OSJ 2001-03, 2005-06), Bojan Knezevic (Adler 1995), Deborah Martinez-Rosengaus, Robert Mellon, Talin Nalbandian, and Jonathan Smucker. Click here for tickets.
Sat Mar 14 at 7:30pm & Sun Mar 15 at 2pm
Bankhead Theater, 2400 First St, Livermore

Sadly, Pocket Opera had to cancel the final performance of its critically acclaimed Don Giovanni, originally slated for Sunday afternoon at the Oshman Family JCC.

We are encouraging patrons who have tickets to cancelled performances to consider donating them back (personal finances permitting) to the producing company to help support artists whose livelihoods have been upended by this crisis. These are indeed the “times that try men’s (Ed. note: and women’s) souls” but with luck and care we will all get through this to better days ahead.

Stay safe & enjoy!