Virtual Event Series

Opera Aficionado is an exciting, new suite of programs designed for patrons who are passionate about opera. Aficionado provides an opportunity to learn more, dive deeper, and get an inside look at the world of opera.

As part of Opera Aficionado, our Interactive Lectures Series gives opera-goers around the world a front-row seat to scholarly talks, allowing attendees to dialogue with fellow opera lovers, experts, and special guests. Each month will be focused on a concept or theme relevant to all of us.

Due to the interactive nature of this event, attendance is limited.


Sundays from 1:00 - 2:15 pm (PDT)


Zoom (links are emailed one hour prior to each event)

By participating in this event, you authorize San Francisco Opera to photograph, take video footage, and/or make electronic sound recordings of you. You permit the use of any such photographic or electronic reproductions for any purpose, including but not limited to educational and public media, and understand that you may be identifiable from such electronic reproduction.


$5 Student/Educator

$20 Standard Rate*

$40 Enable a Student/Educator to Attend**

*Buy 2 for a 10% discount, 3 for a 15% discount, and 4 for a 20% discount

**this is not a tax-deductible contribution


A limited number of discounted tickets are available for individuals in need. Email [email protected] or call (415) 565-3274 if you have any questions.

Donors giving $200+ qualify for at least one complimentary Opera Aficionado event while space is available.  Please call (415) 621-4403 to reserve your spot. Visit sfopera.com/benefits to review benefits for your giving level.


Happy Birthday, Aficionado!

Our Favorite Moments in Opera

Sunday, May 16, 2021 at 1PM

Speaker: Robert Hartwell

Throughout our first year, Robert Hartwell has magically brought opera to life during each of his visits to Opera Aficionado. His passion for this artform transcends the Zoom screen and makes us all feel as though we’re listening to the best of all stories. Join Robert as he explores his favorite moments in opera and why he loves them. 

This event is free. Please register using the "Buy Tickets" button.

Happy Birthday, Aficionado!

Opera's Hidden Gems

Sunday, May 23, 2021 at 1PM

Speaker: Cori Ellison

The prima donna is beloved for their talent in stealing the spotlight, but what about the seconda? Some of the most finely crafted moments in opera belong not to the princess or nobleman, but to their maid and servant. If opera had a best supporting award, who would be the nominees? Our Viewers Choice Survey will determine the gems we love most in opera's best hidden moments. 

This event is free. Please register using the "Buy Tickets" button.

African American Music Appreciation Month

Landscape of Change: Interview with Fred Matthews

Sunday, June 6, 2021 at 1PM

Speaker: Frederick Matthews

Interviewer: Cole Thomason-Redus

For thirty-seven seasons, baritone Frederick Matthews reigned as a pillar of the San Francisco Opera Chorus and a fixture on the stage of the War Memorial Opera House. His retirement in December of 2020 – a year without live opera – left him devoid of that final bow, during which the entire house would’ve undoubtedly leapt to their feet with thunderous applause. Please join us in our efforts to provide that moment of gratitude as we celebrate Frederick’s career and the sweeping landscape of change witnessed during his decades-long journey at San Francisco Opera.

African American Music Appreciation Month

Opera in the Harlem Renaissance

Sunday, June 13, 2021 at 1PM

Speaker: Melissa Givens

For many of us, the Harlem Renaissance points our thoughts towards smoky nightclubs like The Cotton Club, iconic singers like Billie Holiday, and the jazz poetry of Langston Hughes. Beyond the most famous figures dominating that artistic Mecca, lie the stories of African American opera singers and the Black opera companies that today remain almost forgotten. Professor and soprano Melissa Givens will take us on a journey into that renaissance and shed light onto the stages remembered only in obscure articles of Black history.

African American Music Appreciation Month

All About Marian Anderson

Sunday, June 20, 2021 at 1PM

Speaker: Mark Burford

In 1939, contralto Marian Anderson was famously denied permission to perform at Washington D.C.’s Constitution Hall due to the color of her skin. At her historic Lincoln Memorial performance that same year, it was the content of her character and the voice of a century that delivered her into the hearts and homes of everyday Americans. Professor Mark Burford will take us beyond that footnote to share a more complete portrayal of this important character in African American Music History.

Opera in Latin America

The Zarzuela

Sunday, July 11, 2021 at 1PM

Speaker: Stage Director Emilio Sagi

Opera in Latin America

Baroque Opera in Mexico

Sunday, July 18, 2021 at 1PM

Speaker: Laura Prichard

Opera in Latin America

Contemporary Latin Stageworks

Sunday, July 25, 2021 at 1PM

Speaker: Albert Montañez



Want to know more about that specific production you love? Want to hear from your favorite artist? Let us know what topics and contents you want to see as part of the Opera Aficionado program.