It was cold in New York in February, 2008 when I flew into LaGuardia airport, but not too cold.  After years of living in Lexington, KY, where I raised a son and worked on a Master’s in Vocal performance at the University of Kentucky Opera Theatre, I always flew into the busiest airport of my hometown for opera auditions with the romantic head of a twenty-something professional virgin from the midwest—this, when I was anything but.
Posted: 06/17/2014 by by Earl Hazell, (Extra Chorus, Show Boat)


Albanian tenor Saimir Pirgu knows a thing or two about Alfredo Germont—the dashing young man who falls in love with, is heart-broken by, reconnects with, and ultimately loses the love of his life. He has performed La Traviata around the world at many of the most important opera houses and opposite some of opera's most saught-after leading ladies as the fickle, beautiful and terminally ill courtesan Violetta. He returns to San Francisco Opera to perform the role with Nicole Cabell as Violetta and Vladamir Stoyanov as Giorgio Germont. What has Saimir learned from his many portrayals of Alfredo? We asked him 5 questions to find out.
Posted: 06/10/2014 by Saimir Pirgu (Alfredo, La Traviata)


On Saturday, November 9, we hosted our 2nd free Community Open House, featuring fun events and activities for all ages. It's such a joy to open the doors of the beautiful War Memorial Opera House to droves of people who may have never even been inside before. The 2013 Open House included many diverse presentations and opportunities to connect with opera in new ways, including onstage musical demonstrations; sing-alongs with the San Francisco Opera Chorus and San Francisco Opera Adler Fellows; stage combat workshops; costume, wig and makeup demonstrations; a costume photo booth; an opportunity to meet San Francisco Opera General Director David Gockley; and family activities throughout the opera house lobbies including a scavenger hunt, prop-making, costume crafts, and more, with workshops designed for both adults and families. 
Posted: 11/18/2013 by San Francisco Opera


This Friday, San Francisco Opera will celebrate the opening of our 91st Season with a gala opening night like none other. Co-chaired by Ann Girard and Mai Shiver, San Francisco Opera Guild’s sold-out 2013 Opera Ball: The Garden of Good and Evil will be created by celebrity event designer Colin Cowie and will reflect the celestial and devilish themes of the evening’s performance––late 19th-century Italian composer Arrigo Boito’s Mefistofele.



Posted: 09/03/2013 by Colin Cowie, Opera Ball 2013 Designer


Everyone knows that the opening night Opera Ball is a glamorous event full of flowers,  decorations, food, libations and of course, fashion! But there are many who attend the opening night performance alone, without attending one of the galas--and we wouldn't want them to miss out on the glamor! Every year, Opening Weekend Grand Sponsor Diane B. Wilsey donates a beautiful, hand crafted and unique flower garland to adorn the boxes of the War Memorial Opera House. To most of us, the flowers seem to simply appear on opening night to add a colorful, whimsical decorative element to the special evening...but we knew there was more to it than that. This time, we decided to find out a little bit more about the people and process behind the opening night flower garland. And boy, did we learn a lot!
Posted: 09/12/2012 by San Francisco Opera


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Introduction

Backstage at San Francisco Opera is a fascinating, fast-moving, mysterious and sacred space for the Company’s singers, musicians, dancers, technicians and production crews. Musical and staging rehearsals are on-going, scenery is loaded in and taken out, lighting cues are set, costumes and wigs are moved around and everything is made ready to receive the audience. From the principal singers, chorus and orchestra musicians to the creative teams for each opera, in addition to the many talented folks who don’t take a bow on stage, this blog offers unique insight, both thought-provoking and light-hearted, into the life backstage at San Francisco Opera.

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