Did you know…?

Today we dive into the history of Verdi’s brilliant work, Don Carlo.
There are 4 versions of Don Carlo. The first is the five-act French version which premiered in Paris in 1867. The second, a five-act Italian version which premiered in Naples in 1872. The third was a shortened to a four-act Italian version for Milan in 1884. Finally, a five-act Italian version without the ballet was made for opera house in Modena in 1886. Today, the most commonly performed are the French version of 1867 and Italian version of 1884. 

Posted: 03/20/2015 by San Francisco Opera

Carmen routinely ranks among the world’s most performed operas, but perhaps no single work in the repertoire is as well known outside the opera house. Music from Carmen is regularly performed in concert settings, and it has been adapted as a ballet, a film on ice (starring Katarina Witt and Brian Boitano), and a hip-hopera (Beyonce’s acting debut).

Posted: 03/13/2015 by San Francisco Opera

Each year, there is one particular day celebrated by math nerds and bakers alike: March 14. Why, you ask? Because it’s Pi Day! Pi is the mathematical constant, the ratio of a circle’s circumference to its diameter, and it is commonly approximated to 3.14159, though it can extended to over 13.3 trillion (yes, trillion) digits. This year's celebration is considered the mother lode of all Pi Days because it is the only day in this century that will follow Pi to four digits, as it occurs on March 14, 2015 (3.14.15 – get it?) It is customary on Pi Day to eat -- what else?-- pie. And even though Pi Day did not exist during the Dickensian days of Sweeney Todd, we think the entrepreneurial Mrs. Lovett would have happily embraced the holiday. And so we share two beloved pie recipes from our staff – one sweet and one savory -- which will be served on Pi Day in honor of Mrs. Lovett. And unlike Mrs. Lovett, we can guarantee that no poets or priests were harmed in the making of these pies.
Posted: 03/13/2015 by San Francisco Opera

Gioachino Rossini's comic and musical masterpiece, The Barber of Seville has long been a favorite of opera aficionados and novices. This opera has frequently made its way into television, movies, and commercials, so whether or not you've ever been to the opera house, you've surely heard a tune or two from The Barber of Seville.

With an ever fresh storyline that could be straight of a Hollywood romantic comedy and a magnificent score that includes a gorgeous overture and Figaro’s famous aria “Largo Al Factotum”, it’s no wonder that this piece continues to appear again and again in so many mediums.
Posted: 02/27/2015 by San Francisco Opera

Chong Wang joins us as an Adler Fellow from Shijiazhuang, Hebei, China. Mr. Wang studied at the Conservatory of the People’s Liberation Party in China, and has performed numerous roles at Beijing’s National Centre for the Performing Arts, including the Steersman (Der Fliegende Holländer), the Messenger (Aida), Dr. Caius (Falstaff), Ruiz (Il Trovatore), and Rodolphe (William Tell). Chong will join fellow Adlers Matthew Stump, Zanda Svede, and Jacqueline Piccolino in an upcoming Schwabacher Debut Recital with famed pianist and coach, Martin Katz! 
Posted: 02/25/2015 by San Francisco Opera

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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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