In Ms. Karen Chu's 5th grade class at West Portal Elementary, we struck story-writing gold. With this group, we had just thirteen weeks to write, compose, design, rehearse and perform a mini-opera. Needless to say, we moved through it all at lightning speed. Immediately after choosing a location (Atlantis) and listing possible characters (King Neptune, the Kraken, mermaid archers, and an evil sorcerer to name a few), the class broke up into four groups, with one story-sifting worksheet assigned to each.
Posted: 04/26/2012 by
Erin Bregman (San Francisco Opera Teaching Artist)
We cannot wait to unveil our brand new production of The Magic Flute
, designed for us by visual artist and sculptor Jun Kaneko. His whimsical, colorful and creative production features unique and stunning costumes and a playful world that comes to life through complex projections. One of the (many) challenges that comes with presenting a brand new production is finding appropriate images to promote the opera months in advance, often times when the sets and costumes are yet to be built. This time we really lucked out and had the unique opportunity to have a photo shoot with one of the stars of the show a couple of months before he gets to town to begin rehearsals.
Posted: 04/18/2012 by
San Francisco Opera
I have received several inquiries into why we are performing our upcoming Magic Flute
in English. It’s a good question that deserves an explanation.
In Mozart’s time (late 1700’s), Italian was the language of opera. The genre of Italian “opera seria” crossed the Alps and settled in Austria, Germany and England in particular. Audiences in Austria attended “court operas,” supported by the nobility and presented in theaters that were near–or a part of–royal or lordly palaces. One can remember the image of Mozart’s operas being performed in Vienna’s Burgtheater in the film Amadeus. Lots of powdered faces, white wigs and bitchy courtiers. After Cosi fan tutte, Mozart fell out of favor with the Austrian court and lost his salaried position. He was also losing his health.
Posted: 03/12/2012 by
David Gockley (General Director)
Jun Kaneko, renowned Japanese-American visual artist, is the Production Designer for our new production of
The Magic Flute, opening June 13, 2012. His ceramic, bronze, and glass sculptural work and two-dimensional artwork appears in numerous international solo and group exhibitions annually and is included in approximately fifty museum collections. He has realized almost thirty public art commissions in the United States and Japan. His previous opera productions were
Madama Butterfly for Opera Omaha (2007) and
Fidelio for the Opera Company of Philadelphia (2008).
Posted: 03/06/2012 by
Jun Kaneko (Production Designer, The Magic Flute)
While Hollywood geared up for the Oscars this past weekend, we in the Education Department prepared for our own celebration of film: free screenings of Puccini’s The Girl of the Golden West for Families
at the Herbst Theatre! The movie was a shortened, one-hour version of the production that premiered at War Memorial Opera House in June 2010.
Posted: 02/28/2012 by
Dolores DeStefano (Education Program Associate)