World Premiere Review: Adams’ “Girls of the Golden West”, San Francisco Opera, November 21, 2017

Three decades ago the team of composer John Adams and director Peter Sellars (with librettist Alice Goodman) created “Nixon in China”, one of the most durable operatic works of the late 20th century. Sellars and Adams joined forces again for “Girls of the Golden West”, with Sellars as both director and librettist. Their collaboration produced … Read more

A Second Look Review: “Manon” – San Francisco Opera, November 19, 2017

Previously, I had reviewed the San Francisco Opera’s opening performance of its new production of Massenet’s “Manon” [Review: An Exquisitely Sung “Manon” with Ellie Dehn and Michael Fabiano – San Francisco Opera, November 4, 2017]. I returned to the War Memorial Opera House for the fifth of six “Manon” performances. [Below: Manon (Ellie Dehn, right) and … Read more

Review: San Francisco Opera’s Treasured “Turandot” – Stemme, Crocetto, Howard Join Cast, November 18, 2017

The San Francisco Opera resumed its Fall 2017 performances of Puccini’s “Turandot”, for a November-December run of six perfomances, with changes in three of the four principal cast member assignments and a new conductor’s company debut. Previously I reviewed the first and fifth of San Francisco Opera’s September run of Puccini’s “Turandot” [See Review: San Francisco … Read more

In Quest of Mozart and Bellini Operatic Masterpieces, January-April 2018

In the first four months of 2018, I will be attending performances in Seattle, Sarasota, Dallas and Houston of works by two composers, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart and Vincenzo Bellini, neither of whom lived to age 36. In contrast to Mozart’s and Bellini’s brief lifespans, consider American composer Carlisle Floyd, whose first operatic success “Susannah” dates … Read more

Review: An Exquisitely Sung “Manon” with Ellie Dehn and Michael Fabiano – San Francisco Opera, November 4, 2017

For the first time in the 21st century, the San Francisco Opera presented “Manon”, the most popular of the operas of 19th century French composer Jules Massenet. The performance was the occasion of the role debuts of Minnesota soprano Ellie Dehn as Manon Lescaut and New Jersey tenor Michael Fabiano as Manon’s lover, the Chevalier … Read more