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Opera San Luis Obispo's New Production of Madama Butterfly Debuts Oct 14-15
One of the most beloved operas of all time, this October 14 and 15 Japan's red sun rises in San Luis Obispo with a new Grand Opera production in San Luis Obispo, CA.
It is the dawn of the 20th century; Japan's borders are newly opened to colonialism and America is eager to begin trade. The young, beautiful geisha named Cio-Cio San (Madama Butterfly) has renounced her family religion, adopted Christianity, and is about to be married to Benjamin Franklin Pinkerton, an American naval officer. While the impressionable Butterfly takes the marriage very seriously, Pinkerton is not sure whether his feelings for her are love or a whim. Nevertheless they marry, and soon thereafter Pinkerton and his ship sail away.
Abandoned by her friends and family, three long years pass and Butterfly is virtually destitute. She and her 3-year-old son resolutely believe in Pinkerton's promise of return, and finally one morning, from her little house overlooking Nagasaki harbor, they spot Pinkerton's ship! As fate docks, Butterfly, her son, and faithful servant Suzuki joyously prepare for their reunion. Will Pinkerton and Butterfly find love again, their family finally complete? Or will she be forgotten?
Our Citywide Arts Collaboration continues in this expansive new Grand Opera production featuring soaring arias, new original period sets and costumes, ballet, an internationally acclaimed cast of opera singers, and the Opera San Luis Obispo Grand Orchestra and Chorus conducted by Artistic Director Brian Asher Alhadeff. Our Citywide Arts Collaborators include Central Coast Children's Choir, Civic Ballet San Luis Obispo, Deyo Dances, and Studio @-Ryan's American Dance. Get tickets at https://pacslo.org/
This production features venerable soprano Rena Harms as Madama Butterfly, having just performed the role with English National Opera, Opera Theatre of Saint Louis, and Arizona Opera. OperaSLO is excited to welcome back mezzo-soprano Karin Mushegain in the role of Suzuki – Ms. Mushegain played the title role in OperaSLO's 2013 production of Carmen. Tenor Christopher Bengochea performs the role of Pinkerton and baritone Gregorio Gonzales returns to OperaSLO in the role of Sharpless. This production is directed by Edna Garabedian with choreography by Andrew Silvaggio.
OperaSLO is also proud to feature a Children's Arts Showcase educational initiative directly related to this production. When 2,200 patrons attend performances on October 14 and 15, they will have the opportunity of seeing the lobby of the Performing Arts Center San Luis Obispo adorned with art inspired by Madama Butterfly, created by young artists from public schools throughout San Luis Obispo County. This initiative is part of a growing partnership between OperaSLO, County Superintendent Dr. James Brescia, and the San Luis Obispo Offices of Education, demonstrating that music education is positively linked to the intellectual and emotional development of our youth.
Join us for a pre-opera talk one hour before curtain at each performance.
About Opera San Luis Obispo
Located on California's beautiful Central Coast since 1985, Opera San Luis Obispo is the region's only professional opera company, and one of only four Grand Opera companies in the state. OperaSLO productions boast full orchestras, choruses, ballet, and original, complete sets and costumes. Season programs feature diverse events from elegant and intimate recital series to exciting educational experiences and spectacular grand opera and musical theatre productions. OperaSLO complements each season with an ever-changing cascade of rising opera and Broadway stars of both national and international acclaim. OperaSLO is a Resident Company at the Performing Arts Center San Luis Obispo as well as Vina Robles Amphitheatre. For more information about OperaSLO call (805) 541-5369 or visit online at https://www.operaslo.org/