Upcoming Seasons at SF Opera

Before I forget, La Fille du Régiment was mentioned as an opera to be performed at San Francisco Opera in the next few years. Also, William Friedkin is to work on a La Scala/San Francisco Opera co-production of Mefistofele. Earlier this year we heard that Peter Grimes, La Fanciulla del West, Il Trovatore, Il Trittico, The Makropoulos Case, Salomé, and Moby-Dick are also on deck.

Gossip on SF Opera's 2009-2010 Season

It is early to speculate, but gossip has been flying around about San Francisco Opera productions beyond the 2008-2009 season that was just announced.

Starting with the press release [PDF], Peter Grimes will be performed in 2009-2010, conducted by Donald Runnicles. He'll also return for the presentation of whole Ring, which I heard will not be done until 2011, because of scheduling conflicts. Nina Stemme shall be singing Sieglinde, and the SF Chronicle says that Torsten Kerl is being considered for Siegfried.

La Fanciulla del West was supposed to be in the 2006-2007 season, but was replaced by Die Fledermaus. The Chronicle reported that Fanciulla is slated for 2009-2010, Salvatore Licitra will sing Dick Johnson/Ramerrez. I heard a rumor that Deborah Voigt will be singing Minnie.

Jake Heggie's Moby-Dick will be at San Francisco Opera some time after its premiere in the Spring of 2010.

Other unsubstantiated possibilities include Il Trovatore with Sondra Radvanovsky, Stephanie Blythe, Dmitri Hvorostovsky, and Marco Berti; Il Trittico with Patricia Racette and Paolo Gavenelli; The Makropoulos Case with Karita Mattila; and Salomé with Nadja Michael.

Dita von Teese and Vienna's Opera Ball

Heather Renée Sweet, known as Dita von Teese, the burlesque star, is attending Vienna's Opera Ball (Wiener Opernball) on January 31, 2008. She was invited by Richard Lugnar, whose guest last year was Paris Hilton. I'm sure the Austrian media will have a field day.

IHT Article |Wiener Zeitung Article | Dita von Teese | Wiener Opernball

Speculation on SF Opera's 2008-2009 Season

I've noticed a fair amount of people coming to this blog in search of San Francisco Opera's next season, which will be announced this week. Certainly we have some insight into the programming, Stewart Wallace's The Bonesetter's Daughter will have its world premiere, Qian Yi will be in the lead role with her San Francisco Opera debut. We also know that music director designate Nicola Luisotti is returning to San Francisco Opera this Fall to conduct La Bohème. David Gockley himself said that Angela Gheorghiu is to sing here next in Bohème, perhaps the Met simulcast in April, which has both Luisotti and Gheorghiu, will be a good preview. I wouldn't be surprised if Gheorghiu also gave a concert at some point, when she is over on this coast, as she has in Los Angeles. Inva Mula's official site says she is engaged to sing Adina in L'Elisir d'Amore. The Ring cycle will conclude the 2008-2009 season, conducted by Donald Runnicles. Janos Gereben also reported last month in SFCV that Dmitri Hvorostovsky will sing Simon Boccanegra on opening night and Korngold's Die Tote Stadt has its SF Opera premiere some time between August 26 and October 12, 2008. Torsten Kerl sings Paul and Emily Magee sings Marietta.

Idle Soprano Gossip

BirdAs you might remember, Angela Gheorghiu (Magda in La Rondine) was fired by  Lyric this season. A little bird told me that Ms. Gheorghiu is very nice and not a diva at all. I heard from someone else that she might have been a little testy about her lodging. It was also suggested that she is like her name, angelic.

More entertainingly, I heard that Georgina Lukács (Lady Macbeth in Macbeth), is as disagreeable as her voice. Slaps and spitting were mentioned. I'll certainly think of this when I listen to her tonight.


Yesterday in the standing room line for Un Ballo in Maschera, two men behind me were yelling at each other. "Shut up!" said one, and "No, you shut up!" said the other. At first I assumed they must be friends simply having a bit of fun, but it became clear this altercation was in earnest. Strangely enough, there were only 5 people in line. A lady behind me asked if I had been waiting ahead of her, and I confirmed that I was second. She asserted that she was before the yelling men, and they let her be third. It was all especially bizarre since one of the men did not materialize at the appointed time for when they allow us in to take our spots.