Opera: FREE OPERA STREAMS IN AUGUST (San Francisco Opera)

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by Jim Allen on August 6, 2021

in Music,Theater-San Francisco / Bay Area


Wagner’s Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg August 7–8
Donizetti’s Roberto Devereux August 14–15

San Francisco Opera is returning to the War Memorial Opera House stage for the opening of its 99th season, which begins with Puccini’s Tosca on August 21. In anticipation, the Company has added two weekly, free opera streams for the month of August: Richard Wagner’s Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg (August 7–8) and Gaetano Donizetti’s Roberto Devereux (August 14–15).

Part of the Company’s Opera is ON initiative, free opera streams are viewable on demand with registration at sfopera.com, beginning at 10 am (PT) on the first streaming date through 11:59 pm the following day. Current San Francisco Opera subscribers and members (donors of $75 and up) retain access to opera titles after their window of public access through August 20.

This fall, San Francisco Opera will present a new live streaming option for select performances of Music Director Eun Sun Kim’s inaugural season. Offered for the first time in Company history, livestreams of San Francisco Opera’s new productions of Beethoven’s Fidelio on October 14, 17 and 20 and Così fan tutte on November 21, 23 and 27 will enable audiences from anywhere in the world to experience these live performances. Virtual tickets will be available for $25 this fall; for more information, visit sfopera.com/online. 


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Scenes from Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg (2015). Photos: Cory Weaver/San Francisco Opera

Conductor Sir Mark Elder makes his San Francisco Opera debut in Sir David McVicar’s “enthralling” (San Francisco Chronicle) production of Richard Wagner’s 1868 opera, Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg. Baritone James Rutherford takes on one of the most demanding roles in the operatic repertoire, Hans Sachs, the mastersinger and cobbler. Tenor Brandon Jovanovich adds the knight Walther von Stolzing to his list of Wagnerian leading roles. By way of a singing contest, Walther tries to win the love of Eva, portrayed by soprano Rachel Willis-Sorensen. Bass Ain Anger is her father, Veit Pogner, who promises her hand to the winner of the mastersinger’s contest. Baritone Martin Gantner is Walther’s rival, Sixtus Beckmesser, and tenor Alek Shrader is Hans Sach’s apprentice, David. Eva’s nurse, Magdalene, is performed by mezzo-soprano Sasha Cooke, and bass-baritone Philip Horst is fellow mastersinger Fritz Kothner. Marie Lambert and Ian Rutherford co-revive McVicar’s staging in this 2015 San Francisco Opera co-production with Lyric Opera of Chicago and Glyndebourne Festival Opera designed by Vicki MortimerPaule Constable is the lighting designer with her associate Jeremy TurnbullColm Seery restages Andrew George’s choreography. San Francisco Opera’s Chorus Director Ian Robertson prepares the work’s numerous choral scenes. Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg is performed in German with English subtitles and has an approximate running time of 4 hours and 52 minutes.


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Scenes from Roberto Devereux (2018). Photos: Cory Weaver/San Francisco Opera

After a 39-year absence from the War Memorial Opera House stage, Gaetano Donizetti’s Roberto Devereux returns with a cast led by soprano Sondra Radvanovsky in her final engagement as Elisabetta, Queen of England, before retiring the role from her stage repertoire. Opera News calls her showstopping performance of “Vivi, ingrato,” the opera’s final aria, “riveting.” As Roberto Devereux and Sara, the Duchess of Nottingham, tenor Russell Thomas and mezzo-soprano Jamie Barton reunite with Radvanovsky on stage, after their memorable performances in the Company’s 2014 production of Norma. Also starring are San Francisco Opera Adler Fellows baritone Andrew Manea, as the Duke of Nottingham and Devereux’s closest friend, and tenor Amitai Pati, as Lord Cecil. Director Stephen Lawless uses London’s The Globe Theatre as the visual inspiration for this Canadian Opera Company production featuring sets by Benoît Dugardyn, costumes by Ingeborg Bernerth and lighting by Christopher Akerlind. Italian conductor and Donizetti aficionado Riccardo Frizza leads the San Francisco Opera Orchestra with “insightful precision” (San Francisco Examiner). Roberto Devereux is performed in Italian with English subtitles and has an approximate total running time of 2 hours and 19 minutes.

For more information, visit sfopera.com, and follow San Francisco Opera on FacebookInstagramTwitter and Spotify.

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