In Quest of Less Often Performed Repertory Operas – October 2018 – August 2019

All four of the operas below are part of the core opera repertory, but are performed much less often than the most popular operas.

Arabella (Richard Strauss), San Francisco Opera, October 16, 19, 24, 28(m) and November 3, 2018.

Ellie Dehn is Arabella, Brian Mulligan is Mandryka, Daniel Johansson is Matteo and Heidi Stober is Zdenka in Tim Albery’s production of Richard Strauss’ “Arabella”, which is a co-production of the Santa Fe Opera, Minnesota Opera and Canadian Opera Company.

[Below: Count Mandryka (Brian Mulligan, right) presents himself to Arabella (Ellie Dehn, left); edited image, based on a Cory Weaver photograph, courtesy of the San Francisco Opera.]

The production, which premiered in Santa Fe, has sets by Tobias Hoheisel. A distinguished group of San Francisco Opera veterans comprise the comprimario roles: Hye Jung Lee is the Fiakermilli, Jill Grove the Fortune Teller, Michaela Martens is Adelaide, Richard Paul Fink is Count Waldner, Scott Quinn is Count Elemer, and Christian Pursell is Count Lamoral. Maestro Marc Albrecht conducts.

[For my review of Tim Albery’s original production at the Santa Fe Opera, see: Erin Wall, Mark Delavan Are Superb in Elegant New Production of “Arabella” – Santa Fe Opera, August 1, 2012.]

[For my performance review, see: Review: Dehn and Mulligan Illumine Albery’s Stylish “Arabella” – San Francisco Opera, October 16, 2018.]

Falstaff (Verdi), The Dallas Opera, April 26, 28(m), May 1 and 4, 2019.

Mark Delavan is Falstaff, Angela Meade is Alice Ford, Quinn Kelsey is Ford, Stephanie Blythe is Dame Quickly and Andrea Silvestrelli is Pistola in a revival of the “Falstaff” production created by the late Lee Blakeley.

[Below: Mark Delavan as Sir John Falstaff; edited image, based on a Karen Almond photograph, courtesy of  The Dallas Opera.]

Also in the production are Mocja Erdmann as Nanetta, Megan Marino as Meg Page, Alex Mansoori as Bardolfo, Airam Hernandez as Fenton and Robert Brubaker as Dr Caius. Maestro Ricardo Frizza conducts. Shawn Lucey conducts the revival, whose sets are by Adrian Linford.

[For my review of Lee Blakeley’s original production at the Los Angeles Opera, see: A Lovable “Falstaff”: Roberto Frontali Brilliant in Lee Blakeley’s Enchanting New Production – Los Angeles Opera, November 9, 2013.]

[For my performance review, see: Review: World Class Performances and Rollicking Fun in The Dallas Opera’s “Falstaff” – April 28, 2019.]

The Pearl Fishers (Bizet), Santa Fe Opera, June 29, July 5, 10, 30 and August 8, 2019.

Lisette Oropesa is Leila, Ilker Arcayurek is Nadir, Anthony Clark Evans is Zurga and Pobert Pomakov is Nourabad in a revival of the late Lee Blakeley’s production of Bizet’s youthful, beautifully melodic opera “The Pearlfishers”.

[Below: Corinne Winters as Leila; edited image, based on a production photograph, courtesy of the Santa Fe Opera.]

Jean-Marc Puissant’s sets (so large that they generated Santa Fe Opera’s successful national fundraising campaign to enlarge backstage areas and improve the company’s facilities) time-shift the production to mid-19th century Sri Lanka.

Shawna Lucey directs the revival. Maestro Timothy Myers conducts.

[For my performance review of Lee Blakeley’s original production at the Santa Fe Opera, see: The Stylishly Gallic Santa Fe Opera: Eric Cutler, Nicole Cabell Radiant in Bizet’s “Pearl Fishers” – July 31, 2012.]Fo

[For my performance review, see: Review: Santa Fe Opera’s Passionate “Pearl Fishers” – June 29, 2019.]

Jenufa (Janacek), Santa Fe Opera, July 20, 24, August 2, 6 and 15, 2019.

Director David Alden brings his English National Opera production to Santa Fe. Laura Wilde is Jenufa, Patricia Racette is her mother, Kostelnicka and Alexander Lewis is Laca.

[Below: Janacek specialist Patricia Racette takes on the role of Kostelnicka; edited image, from a YouTube video.]

Others in the cast include Richard Smagur (Steva) and Will Liverman (Foreman). Maestro Johannes Debus conducts. The scenic design is by Charles Edwards, the costumes by Jan Morrell.

This list is supplementary to previous lists in this “Quests and Anticipations” series of selected operas being performed through August 2019:

Puccini’s “Tosca” at the San Francisco Opera, Puccini’s “La Boheme” at the Houston Grand Opera and the Santa Fe Opera and Verdi’s “La Traviata” at the Glimmerglass Festival [See In Quest of Italian Opera Favorites, October 2018-August 2019.]

Mozart’s “Idomeneo” at the Lyric Opera of Chicago; Mozart’s “The Marriage of Figaro” at the San Diego Opera, Mozart’s “La Clemenza di Tito” at the Los Angeles Opera and Mozart’s “Don Giovanni” at the Houston Grand Opera [See In Quest of Mozart Operas (October 2018-April 2019)].

Donizetti’s “Roberto Devereux” at the San Francisco Opera [See In Quest of Rossini and Donizetti – June-September, 2018.]

Verdi’s “Don Carlo” at the Los Angeles Opera and Verdi’s “Il Trovatore” at the Seattle Opera [See In Quest of Verdi Operas, March 2018-January 2019.]

Mascagni’s “Cavalleria Rusticana” and Leoncavallo’s “I Pagliacci” at the San Francisco Opera [See In Quest of “Core” Verismo Operas, February-September, 2018.]