When I heard San Francisco Opera had commissioned a new work based on the story of Mary Magdalene, I immediately thought of a beautiful woman with long flowing red hair holding a perfume jar. You see, I was an art history major, and for anyone who has even a passing acquaintance with medieval or Renaissance art, the Magdalene is a familiar face.

During the Middle Ages, Mary Magdalene became an incredibly important devotional figure, second only to Mary, the mother of Jesus. Her past as a sinner made it easy for people to identify with her. (She came to be known as a prostitute, although this is apocryphal.) As the first to actually see Jesus after his resurrection, she could give wayward believers hope that they too could achieve that kind of personal experience with God.
Posted: 04/16/2013 by Dolores DeStefano (Assistant Director of Education)


This week's Adler Profile features 24 year-old bass-baritone Philippe Sly who hails from Ottawa, Canada.  Philippe is a first-year Adler Fellow and is 2011 Grand Prize Winner of the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions.  He was a 2011 participant in the Merola Opera Program where he played Dr. Bartolo in Rossini's Il Barbiere di Siviglia and was a member of the Ensemble Studio at the Canadian Opera Company from 2010-2012.  He is a graduate of the Schulich School of Music at McGill University where he performed the roles of Marcello in Puccini's La Bohème and Nick Shadow in Stravinsky's The Rake's Progress.  Philippe made his SFO Debut as Archibald Craven in the world-premiere production of Nolan Gasser's The Secret Garden this spring and will make his mainstage debut in the leading role of Guglielmo in Mozart's Così fan tutte this summer season.  Philippe was the First Place Winner of the Montreal International Music Competition in 2012 and is an exclusive recording artist with Analekta.  Philippe will perform a solo recital as part of the Schwabacher Debut Recital Series on Sunday, April 7 at 5:30 p.m. at the Temple Emanu-el along fellow Adler Fellow pianist Sunny Yoon. 
Posted: 04/04/2013 by San Francisco Opera


Hadleigh Adams is a bass-baritone and in his first-year of the Adler Fellowship at San Francisco Opera. He is originally from New Zealand where he completed his Bachelor of Music degree at the University of Auckland and Masters of Music at New Zealand School of Music. After completing his studies in New Zealand he was a resident artist at the Opera Studio in Melbourne, Australia. He was a participant in the Merola Opera Program in the summer of 2012 and recently finished his post-graduate studies at the Guildhall School of Music & Drama in London, England. He has performed with the Royal National Theatre and Pinchgut Opera in the United Kingdom and was a winner of the Joan Sutherland & Richard Bonynge Scholarship in 2010. He will be seen this summer season in San Francisco Opera's production of Offenbach's Les Contes d'Hoffmann as Schlemil and in the world-premiere production of Mark Adamo's The Gospel of Mary Magdalene.
Posted: 03/28/2013 by San Francisco Opera


We continue our in-depth profiles of our Adler Fellows this week with second year coaching fellow Robert Mollicone. Originally from East Greenwich, Rhode Island, Robert completed both his undergraduate and graduate studies at Boston University's College of Fine Arts where he assisted on productions there, as well as the Boston University Tanglewood Institute. After completing his studies he was a member of the Spectrum Resident Artist Program at Virginia Opera and the Domingo-Cafritz Young Artist Program at the Washington National Opera. He was a participant in the 2011 Merola Opera Program. As an Adler Fellow, Robert has assisted on productions including The Magic Flute, Nixon in China, Moby-Dick, and The Secret Garden as well as productions with the Merola Opera Program. He has also worked with Boston Lyric Opera, Opera North, and the Baltimore Symphony. 
Posted: 03/15/2013 by San Francisco Opera


Over the next few months, we'll be profiling each of our current Adler Fellows here at "Backstage at San Francisco Opera."  If you have some questions you'd like to ask them, send us a message via email at socialmedia@sfopera.com or via Facebook or Twitter.  Our first Adler Profile is mezzo-soprano Laura Krumm who you can catch this month starring in the world-premiere of Nolan Gasser's The Secret Garden as Martha Sowerby.
Posted: 02/27/2013 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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