* Notes *
San Francisco Opera's Annual Meeting was held yesterday afternoon. Board of Directors President George H. Hume, General Director David Gockley, and CFO Michael Simpson all gave reports. Things seem to be going well, the endowment is up to $125 million from $45 million in 2002-2003, and though subscriptions are slightly down from the previous year, single ticket sales are up. There was a great emphasis on growing a new, younger audience through radio broadcasts, live simulcasts, and the new cinemacasts. A 10 minute clip of the cinemacast for La Rondine was shown. It featured, of course, "Che il bel sogno" from Act I, and the Act II quartet involving Magda, Ruggero, Lisette, and Prunier. Certainly many details are revealed in this medium, and the cameras did not seem to move as wildly as in the Met simulcasts.
Best of all was the short performance of mezzo-soprano Daniela Mack, tenor Andrew Bidlack, and pianist Lara Bolton. Mack sang "Tu Preparati a Morire" from Ariodante beautifully, although with a bit too much vibrato, but at least not the annoying sort. Bidlack sang "De'miei Bolenti Spiriti" from Act II of La Traviata with his usual aplomb. They finished off with a very pretty rendition of the duet "C'est le Ciel qui M'envoie" from La Belle Hélène.
* Tattling *
A cellular phone rang just before the film clip was shown, the ring tone was "Für Elise." A watch alarm signaled the hour during Prunier's part of "Che il bel sogno."
David Gockley did not like the dancing in Tannhäuser. During the Q&A, two people asked about not getting responses for their missives. We also learned that casting for Porgy and Bess is coming along. Karen Slack is to sing Serena, Laquita Mitchell is Clara, and Gregg Baker is Crown.