Reflections of a Verdi Baritone: A Conversation with George Gagnidze

The following conversation follows up on my 2016 in-person interview with George Gagnidze, when he was preparing for a performance of Amonasro with the San Francisco Opera in a new Francesca Zambello production of “Aida”. Gagnidze returned to California in May 2022 to perform the role of Amonasro at the Los Angeles Opera, in their mounting of … Read more

The San Francisco Opera Centennial: Artist Conversations, Part 1: Kevin Langan

In observance of the hundredth season of the San Francisco Opera, whose performances I have attended since my middle and high school years, I am conducting a series of conversations with artists associated with the company. The first of these conversations is with American bass Kevin Langan, who participated in the company’s Merola young artists … Read more

In Quest of 21st Century Operas

The following is a list of operas, each composed in the second or third decade of the 21st century, performances of which I am scheduled to review at the San Francisco and Santa Fe Operas. The Dream of the Red Chamber (Sheng and Hwang), San Francisco Opera, June 14, 17, 19, 23, 25, July 1 … Read more

Historical Performances: Ghita Hager Directs Roberto, di Virgilio, Cossa in “Cavalleria Rusticana” – San Francisco Spring Opera Theater [SPOT] – June 16, 1967

Note from William: This post continues my series of observances of historic performances that I attended at San Francisco Opera during the general directorship of Kurt Herbert Adler. This is the first of three such observances of performances from the company’s 1967 Spring Opera Theater [SPOT] season. My first performance ever of Pietro Mascagni’s “Cavalleria … Read more