Release date: 4/3/2014

San Francisco Opera Presents The Gershwins'® Porgy and BessSM  at Sundance Kabuki Cinemas, April 21 

Porgy and Bess DVD/Blu-ray now available at San Francisco Opera Online Shop

Photos Available
SAN FRANCISCO (April 3, 2014)—San Francisco Opera partners with Sundance Cinemas to present the Company’s highly acclaimed production of George and Ira Gershwin’s Porgy and Bess at the Sundance Kabuki Cinemas in San Francisco on Monday, April 21 at 7:15 p.m.  The high-definition screening is an encore performance of San Francisco Opera’s 2009 production, now released as a part of the Company’s Grand Opera Cinema Series.  This recording of Porgy and Bess was also released by EuroArts Music International in March 2014 on DVD and Blu-ray and is now available for purchase at San Francisco Opera’s new online shop, shop.sfopera.com. This release marks the first live recording of Porgy and Bess available on Blu-ray and the first new DVD release of the work in more than 20 years. 
 
A turbulent story of love found and lost, Porgy and Bess is a quintessentially American masterpiece highlighted by almost a dozen of Gershwin’s most recognizable melodies, including “Summertime,” “I Got Plenty o’ Nuttin’” and “It Ain’t Necessarily So.” The exceptional ensemble cast features American bass-baritone Eric Owens, in “an unforgettable performance, an ennobling, majestic performance” (San Jose Mercury News), and soprano Laquita Mitchell, who “dazzled the SFO audience with her purity of tone and vivid theatrical presence” (Opera News). The cast also features Lester Lynch as Crown, Chauncey Packer as Sportin’ Life, Angel Blue as Clara, Karen Slack as Serena, Alteouise deVaughn as Maria and Eric Greene as Jake.
 
San Francisco Opera’s The Gershwins’® Porgy And BessSM was recorded live in high-definition in June 2009 at San Francisco’s War Memorial Opera House, where Francesca Zambello’s production received widespread critical acclaim: “…the work has returned to San Francisco Opera in splendour, leaving no doubt that this is a masterpiece of American verismo” (Financial Times).  John DeMain, whose 1976 Grammy-winning recording of Porgy and Bess remains a benchmark, conducted the San Francisco Opera Orchestra and Chorus (Ian Robertson, Chorus Director). 
 
Porgy and Bess is the third DVD/Blu-ray release in San Francisco Opera’s new collaboration with EuroArts Music International, following the fall 2013 releases of Jake Heggie and Gene Scheer’s Moby-Dick and Gaetano Donizetti’s Lucrezia Borgia featuring Renée Fleming. Distributed worldwide by Naxos of America, the DVD/Blu-Ray releases are available from all major retailers, the San Francisco Opera Shop and the newly-launched San Francisco Opera Online Shop (shop.sfopera.com).  The recording also features bonus material, including interviews with cast and creative team members.
 
San Francisco Opera’s spring cinema series at Sundance Kabuki Cinemas concludes on May 26 with the Company’s 2007 production of Mozart’s Don Giovanni starring Mariusz Kwiecien, Elza van den Heever, Twyla Robinson, Charles Castronovo and Oren Gradus.
 
Tickets for San Francisco Opera’s Grand Opera Cinema Series at the Sundance Kabuki Cinemas are priced at $12 for adults and $10.25 for seniors, plus a $2 amenity fee.  Screenings are available only for patrons age 21 and over; light food, snacks and alcoholic beverages are available for purchase at the Sundance bistro and bar and may be brought into the theater.  Tickets for reserved seats are available via sundancecinemas.com and at the Sundance Kabuki Box Office.  For more information about Sundance Kabuki Cinemas, visit sundancecinemas.com or call (415) 346-3243‎.
 
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San Francisco Opera’s simulcasts and cinemacasts are made possible through the technology of the Company’s Koret-Taube Media Suite, the first permanent HD broadcast-standard video production facility installed in an American opera house.  A grant from the Koret Foundation provided lead funding for the Koret-Taube Media Suite, with additional support provided by Tad and Dianne Taube.  An anonymous donor committed the remaining required funding.
 
 
SAN FRANCISCO OPERA’S GRAND OPERA CINEMA SERIES
AT SUNDANCE KABUKI CINEMAS
 
 
TICKETS:  Tickets for San Francisco Opera’s Grand Opera Cinema Series at Sundance Kabuki Cinemas are priced at $12 for adults and $10.25 for seniors, plus a $2 amenity fee.  Screenings are available only for patrons age 21 and over; light food, snacks and alcoholic beverages are available for purchase at the Sundance bistro and bar and may be brought into the theater.  Tickets for reserved seats are available via sundancecinemas.com and at the Sundance Kabuki Box Office. 
 
INFORMATION:  For more information about Sundance Kabuki Cinemas, visit sundancecinemas.com or call (415) 346-3243‎.  For more information about San Francisco Opera’s Grand Opera Cinema Series and to view video clips of these operas, visit sfopera.com/cinemaseries.
 
San Francisco Opera’s The Gershwins’® Porgy and Bess SM in HD
 
Monday, April 21, 2014 at 7:15 p.m.                                            Sundance Kabuki Cinemas
Sung in English with English subtitles                                              1881 Post Street, San Francisco
                                                                                                  
A turbulent story of love found and lost, George and Ira Gershwin’s Porgy and Bess, based on the play by Dubose and Dorothy Heyward, is a quintessentially American masterpiece. Bass-baritone Eric Owens and soprano Laquita Mitchell headline the cast as Porgy and Bess alongside Lester Lynch as Crown, Chauncey Packer as Sportin’ Life, Angel Blue as Clara, Karen Slack as Serena, Alteouise deVaughn as Maria and Eric Greene as Jake. Francesca Zambello directs her acclaimed production and John DeMain conducts. [Recorded live at the War Memorial Opera House, Summer 2009]
 
San Francisco Opera’s Don Giovanni in HD                
 
Monday, May 26 at 7:15 p.m.                                                      Sundance Kabuki Cinemas
Sung in Italian with English subtitles                                              1881 Post Street, San Francisco
 
Leading baritone Mariusz Kwiecien sings the title role of Mozart’s Don Juan setting in this riveting San Francisco Opera/Théâtre Royal de la Monnaie co-production conceived by director David McVicar and production designer John McFarlane. The cast features sopranos Elza van den Heever (Donna Anna) and Twyla Robinson (Donna Elvira), mezzo-soprano Claudia Mahnke (Zerlina), tenor Charles Castronovo (Don Ottavio), basses Oren Gradus (Leporello) and Kristinn Sigmundsson (Commendatore), and bass-baritone Luca Pisaroni (Masetto). Conducted by Donald Runnicles and directed by Leah Hausman. [Recorded live at the War Memorial Opera House, Summer 2007]
 
 
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This press release and downloadable photographs of Porgy and Bess and Don Giovanni are available at sfopera.com/press.
                                                                                                                                                        
For further press information, please contact San Francisco Opera Communications:
Jon Finck  (415) 565-6472 / jfinck@sfopera.com
Julia Inouye (415) 565-6430 / jinouye@sfopera.com
Robin Freeman  (415) 565-6451 / rfreeman@sfopera.com
Gelane Pearson (415) 565-6470 / gpearson@sfoepra.com