Michael Cavanagh

Michael Cavanagh

(Winnipeg, Canada)

2019–20 Season: Director, The Marriage of Figaro

Director Michael Cavanagh returns to San Francisco Opera to realize a multi-season project (“The Great American House”) unveiling the Mozart–Da Ponte trilogy—Le Nozze di Figaro, Così fan tutte and Don Giovanni—as a unified cycle. Beginning with a new production of The Marriage of Figaro and continuing through the 2021–22 Season, the cycle will connect the operas through an over-arching framework tracing the evolution of relationships and human behavior within a single house over three epochs of American history.

Cavanagh’s San Francisco Opera credits include new productions of Susannah, Lucia di Lammermoor and, for the 2016 inaugural season of SF Opera Lab, Ana Sokolović’s Svadba–Wedding. He made his Company debut in 2012 with the Bay Area stage premiere of Nixon in China.

Former artistic director of Edmonton Opera, he is one of Canada’s busiest and most successful opera stage directors, directing over 150 productions at companies throughout North America and Europe. Recent highlights include new productions at the Royal Swedish Opera (Aida) and Vancouver Opera (Otello). His highly successful production of Nixon in China was first produced in Vancouver to coincide with the 2010 Winter Olympic Games. Cavanagh has developed and staged many new pieces and is in high demand as a dramaturge and teacher. As a librettist, he has enjoyed critical and popular success with seven chamber operas. Upcoming highlights include return engagements with the opera companies of Montréal, Québec City and Calgary, as well as his debut with San Diego Opera.