Grown deep like the rivers Grown deep like the rivers

June is long gone. It was truly a month of excellence and exuberance here in San Francisco, coupled with cozy and inviting weather, as if to make up for the extended winter.

on July 12, 2023 at 3:50 PM
Glorious excess Glorious excess

Despite the ever-increasing media coverage of San Francisco’s “doom loop,” June 2023 will be forever remembered as the time where San Francisco was the opera capital of the United States.

on June 26, 2023 at 8:00 AM
There will be bloom There will be bloom

In the more than 500 years of the history of operas, rarely (if ever) has a coming of age story, particularly one from the child’s point of view, been presented as the main topic of the opera.

on May 11, 2019 at 3:48 PM
Mortality play Mortality play

Of all Handel’s oratorios, Semele begs most to be staged.

on August 13, 2018 at 10:00 AM
Alexander was great Alexander was great

As the first of the 2018 opera productions last Saturday, the Merola Opera Program chose Mozart’s rarely-performed early serenata, Il re pastore.

on July 25, 2018 at 9:59 AM
Smoky eye witness news Smoky eye witness news

Strikingly styled photos of Iréne Theorin may be found on her website.

on May 09, 2018 at 7:47 PM
Midcentury, modern Midcentury, modern

In recent years, Opera Paralléle has established a reputation for creative programming of contemporary opera in San Francisco. Persuaded both by the promise of an unusual Bernstein-Heggie double bill, and the unusual venue of SF Jazz’s Miner Auditorium, I had the pleasure of attending an excellent production this past week. 

on February 19, 2018 at 9:00 AM
La nuit d’une étoile La nuit d’une étoile

“American tenor Matthew Polenzani sings the title role opposite Natalie Dessay as Antonia, Christian Van Horn as the four villains, Angela Brower as Nicklausse, Hye Jung Lee as Olympia, Irene Roberts as Giulietta and Jacqueline Piccolino as Stella.”

on June 03, 2013 at 11:23 AM

La Cieca has obtained this photo of Thomas Hampson headlining Camouflage Night at Powerhouse, uh, rehearsing for Heart of a Soldier at the San Francisco Opera. You can tell the scene is Northern Rhodesia in 1962, because that is where the British military first started offering complimentary personal training packages to their troops.

on September 06, 2011 at 9:43 PM

Reactions to the Zambello Ring may have been mixed, but the response to the Parterrian meet-ups was roaringly positive, as shown by the massive turnout for the last pre-Götterdämmerung brunch. So here (well, actually, not here, but rather after the jump) are the faces behind some of the monikers. 

on July 06, 2011 at 1:28 PM

Here goes with the End of the Gods and the End of these Ring reviews:  Götterdämmerung was more of a mixed bag than the other operas, but still left a powerful impression. This was where Zambello’s choice to steer clear of heavy spectacle was most evident to me. The cost in grandeur was offset by…

on July 03, 2011 at 12:09 PM

Our Own Batty Masetto gently prods, “The first cycle of the San Francisco Ring starts Tuesday, and time’s running out for those who haven’t checked in yet to share in the Parterre festivities. A dazzling array of Parterrians (pictured) have signed up already, so you won’t’ want to miss out on the meet-ups at the…

on June 09, 2011 at 1:58 PM

The Bay Area Chapter of Parterre (pictured) would like to invite all out-of-town Parterrians for a social schedule of sniping, snarking, and general conviviality (hair-pulling strongly discouraged) during the three cycles of the San Francisco Ring.

on May 24, 2011 at 5:34 PM

“Great at push-ups and pull-ups? Do you put your friends to shame at the gym? Come show us what you’ve got! San Francisco Opera announces a public casting call seeking athletic men with specific skills to appear in an upcoming Company production in Fall 2011.” [San Francisco Opera]

on November 12, 2010 at 11:47 AM

La Cieca has managed to nab a few moments of video of tonight’s performance of Vec Makropulos from San Francisco, proving that Karita Mattila is indeed today’s ideal interpreter of the role of Emilia Marty. [Video]

on November 10, 2010 at 10:08 PM

“It is in the Wagner repertory that Ms. Brewer has truly frustrated her fans. She has sung Isolde magnificently, though so far only in the Los Angeles Philharmonic’s ‘Tristan Project,’ which used Bill Viola’s videos, while Ms. Brewer and the other lead singers performed as in a concert, with music stands and vocal scores.” [NYT]

on September 05, 2010 at 12:28 PM

Real estate news from San Francisco: the Potrero Hill home of the late Blanche Thebom, which “includes a very spacious living room that opens onto a large view deck,” is now for sale. [SocketSite]

on September 03, 2010 at 4:01 PM

San Francisco Opera is looking for a trio of Ramon Vargas lookalikes to serve as “doppelgängers” for the tenor in their upcoming production of Werther. [Contra Costa Times]

on August 04, 2010 at 9:04 PM

The lovely and personable Jumping Clapping Man will act as host/coordinator of the first-ever Norcal Gathering Demented Mini-Conference (as seen in the above artist’s rendering). Details after the jump (and clap).

on July 13, 2010 at 3:54 PM

Mlle. La Taupe continues to report from San Francisco’s Die Walküre: “I  neglected to comment about the photos of the fallen heroes, posted upon the jungle gym-like structures on the Walkuerenstein. To be noted as they are photos of fallen soldiers in recent American wars. Pictures are shown by courtesy of and with permission from…

on June 21, 2010 at 11:30 PM

Take a Wild Ride with a Valkyrie!! Yes, that’s what all the signs say around Old Baghdad-by-the-Bay…. So, fasten your seatbelts, y’all, it’s going to be a bumpy night! As it turned out, Die Walküre was an unexpectedly wonderful ride, marking the debut of someone who could be a very important new Brünnhilde, Nina Stemme.…

on June 11, 2010 at 1:34 PM

After the jump, a preview glimpse of Deborah Voigt and company in San Francisco Opera’s production of La fanciulla del West.

on June 08, 2010 at 8:40 PM

David Gockley has accepted Elina Garanca‘s withdrawal for “personal reasons” from San Francisco after discovering a “series of European concerts has been recently announced on Ms. Garanca’s website during the Werther performance schedule.”  [La Cieca earlier reported this story as Gockley’s giving “the boot” to Garanca, which was not accurate.]

on March 17, 2010 at 5:07 PM

If you’re wondering why the relatively inexperienced George Steel was tapped for the demanding job of hauling the New York City Opera out of the basement — instead of front-runner Francesca Zambello, well, maybe this is why: Zambello, currently in London creating a joint Royal Opera and Royal Ballet production of Tchaikovsky’s comic rarity “The…

on October 23, 2009 at 1:14 PM