SFOpera - Reasons to See 2016–17

Reasons to See 2016–17

Earlier this year we asked San Francisco Opera employees to share their thoughts on the operas in our 2016–17 Season. Read their responses in this blog series.

Reasons to See 2016-17 with Paul Dana

Today we present Paul Dana. Self-proclaimed as the “mailroom/office supply guy,” Paul’s operatic knowledge is extensive, his passion for music runs deep and his sense of humor is one of the best around. Paul’s been with the Opera since 1984 and is truly a Company gem. Here are some of Paul’s reasons on why you should see the 2016–17 Season.

Andrea Chénier
I can hardly wait!
A real live blood and thunder Italian opera like we hardly ever see anymore, full of big passions, thrilling music, danger, romance, betrayal—the essential ingredients of verismo. It’s about the violence and terror of the French Revolution (the ultimate revenge of the 99%, perhaps?). I’m especially looking forward to the tenor Yonghoon Lee (very handsome and dashing). Plus it’ll have Nicola Luisotti in the pit, lighting the whole thing on fire.

Don Pasquale
Remember how funny The Daughter of the Regiment was? Same director. Bring it on!
This opera is funny, it’s naughty and has great characters including a take-charge soprano who knows how to get her way. The music sparkles from start to finish. I’m thrilled we’re finally getting the great tenor Lawrence Brownlee, who is a master of this repertoire. Best of all, it’s directed by the fabulous Laurent Pelly—a genius at comedy.

The Makropulos Case
It should be a total treat.
Makropulos
is one of my top ten favorite operas. At the center of the story is a true anti-heroine who tramples everyone in her path in the pursuit of immortality—actual immortality, not the metaphorical kind. You might not like her, but you won’t be able to take your eyes off her, especially with Nadja Michael’s sexy charisma in the role. The drunk scene alone will be worth the price of admission. Besides, the Tambosi production absolutely nails it.

Aida
I don’t usually fall for pyramid schemes, but I won’t miss this one.
Aida
is only one of THE most famous operas ever written and the epitome of grand opera. And with Francesca Zambello directing you know it’ll be alive and vital and NOW. Plus we’re getting our own Leah Crocetto in the title role, a role she was born to sing. I can’t wait to see her square off against a world class Amneris, Ekaterina Semenchuk, who was so terrific in last year’s Luisa Miller.

Madame Butterfly
I’m bringing a whole box of Kleenex.
Everyone loves Butterfly, and everyone loves our beautiful Jun Kaneko production of Butterfly. But what really has me going is the return of Lianna Haroutounian, who made such a wonderful Tosca in 2014—the best I’ve heard in ages. She has all the makings of a great Butterfly.

Don Giovanni
I’m expecting fireworks.
Have you seen the photos of our Don Giovanni, Ildebrando D’Arcangelo? Seriously, have you SEEN them? The guy smolders! Nobody will be safe with him on the stage. And he’s been singing the role in all the big houses, so we know he’ll knock it out of the park. Not that our sopranos will make it easy for him—they’re a great group who will definitely give him hell.

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