Backstage at San Francisco Opera > November 2011 > Turandot by the Numbers
Turandot by the Numbers
How many people does it takes to run a performance of Turandot? More than you might think!

56 stage crew (grips, props, sound, electrics)
24 wardrobe
23 wigs & make-up
11 OperaVision video crew
5 people in the box office
55 volunteer ushers

Front of House
22 House Staff (head ushers, ticket takers, nurse, coat check attendants, elevator operators, concierge, housekeeping)
Sub Total: 196
3 flutes(2 double piccolo), 2 oboes, 1 English horn, 2 clarinets, 1 bass clarinet, 2 bassones, 1 contrabasson, 4 horns, 3 trumpets, 3 trombones, 1 cimbasso, 2 harps, celeste, 40 strings (12 first violins, 9 second violins, 7 violas, 7 chellos, 5 basses).  
1 timpanist (4 drums), 6 percussionist that play the triangle, snare drum, funeral drum, cymbals, tam-tam, 11 tuned gongs, glockenspiel, xylophone, marimba, and chimes.
Backstage: 2 saxophones, 4 trumpets, 4 trombones, woodblocks, gong, organ
Sub Total: 82
Personnel Onstage
9 Principals; 80 choristers; 20 children onstage, 40 children off stage; 50 supernumeraries; 9 dancers.
Sub Total: 208
Year-round Administrative Staff
Grand Total: 534
Posted: 11/23/2011 3:54:12 PM by San Francisco Opera
Filed under: orchestra, production, Turandot


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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