LA Opera Announces 2019/20 Season
Plácido Domingo has announced the company's 2019/20 season. The season will include six mainstage operas, one musical, one recital and one concert presented at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion, with additional performances presented in other venues through the company's Off Grand initiative.
Performances at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion include:
- a new-to-Los-Angeles production of Puccini's La Bohème, conducted by James Conlon and directed by Barrie Kosky-premiering today (Jan 27) at the Komische Oper in Berlin
- the company premiere of Adam Guettel's Tony Award-winning musical The Light in the Piazza, starring Renée Fleming
- a recital by superstar Mexican tenor Javier Camarena
- a revival of Barrie Kosky's production of The Magic Flute, with performances conducted by James Conlon and by Resident Conductor Grant Gershon
- the world premiere of Eurydice, created by composer/conductor Matthew Aucoin (LA Opera's Artist in Residence) and by playwright-turned-librettist Sarah Ruhl, in a production directed by Mary Zimmerman-all three are winners of the MacArthur Foundation's "Genius Grant"
- the company premiere of Donizetti's Roberto Devereux conducted by Eun Sun Kim in her LA Opera debut and directed by Stephen Lawless, with Plácido Domingo making his role debut as the Duke of Nottingham
- a production (new to Los Angeles) of Debussy's Pelléas et Mélisande conducted by James Conlon in a staging by David McVicar
- a concert performance of Handel's Rodelinda featuring the English Concert conducted by Harry Bicket
- a new production of Mozart's The Marriage of Figaro, conducted by James Conlon and directed by filmmaker James Gray, with costumes by couturier Christian Lacroix.
Off Grand performances include:
- for Halloween, screenings of Hitchcock's Psycho featuring the LA Opera Orchestra at the Theatre at Ace Hotel
- Du Yun's Pulitzer Prize-winning opera Angel's Bone, presented at The Broad Stage in association with Beth Morrison Projects
- The Festival Play of Daniel, conducted by James Conlon, at the Cathedral of Our Lady of the Angels
The season will also include LA Opera's fourth countywide festival, Eurydice Found, which will explore the enduring legacy of the Greek myth of Orpheus and Eurydice. Taking place in the early months of 2020, the festival is inspired by the company's world premiere of the new opera by Mr. Aucoin and Ms. Ruhl and embraces works that thematically investigate and emphasize a female viewpoint on this most enduring of myths.
Complete casting, schedules and additional information can be found below and also at LAOpera.org.
Plácido Domingo, Eli and Edythe Broad General Director: "Los Angeles audiences have a passion for discovery and our new season really emphasizes the 'new.' Our seven mainstage productions include a world premiere, two company premieres, and three other productions that haven't been seen in Los Angeles before. Only one of them is a revival, our cutting-edge production of The Magic Flute, which might be the most groundbreaking staging we've ever done. And I'm excited to take on a new role myself, as the Duke of Nottingham in Roberto Devereux. Our goal is to surprise, delight and inspire our audiences in imaginative new ways, and the new season will do so in countless ways."
James Conlon, Richard Seaver Music Director: "I look forward to conducting four absolute masterpieces in the 2019/20 season. I believe our performances of these works will attest to the growing stylistic expertise of the LA Opera Orchestra. This will be my first La Bohème in Los Angeles; it has a special place in my heart, since it was the opera that launched my professional career in 1972. The Magic Flute and The Marriage of Figaro attest to our commitment to the centrality of Mozart's operas to our repertory. Above all, the return to our stage of Debussy's Pelléas et Mélisande, after an absence of 25 years, gives me special pleasure, as it is one of my 'desert island' operas. It will also be an important milestone for our orchestra and I look forward to sharing my passion for it with a new generation of our public. And not to forget The Festival Play of Daniel, our 14th community opera presentation at the Cathedral, which is a special highlight every spring."
Christopher Koelsch, Sebastian Paul and Marybelle Musco President and CEO: "To commemorate our pride and excitement around the world premiere of Eurydice, by our Artist in Residence Matthew Aucoin and Sarah Ruhl, we've convened our fourth-ever countywide festival, inspired by work on our stage. Our new initiative Eurydice Found showcases our intense pride in being a part of the incredibly vibrant and diverse artistic community of Los Angeles. This festival will explore why the powerful themes of ancient Greek myth still resonate with us in contemporary society, and we'll also shine a spotlight on works created by female artists."
Marc Stern, chairman of the board of directors: "A season like this reflects the inspiration, dedication and commitment of literally thousands of members of the LA Opera family. Since we are a nonprofit organization, I am especially grateful to all of our generous supporters who make it possible for us to stand out as a world-class opera company, with special thanks to our incredibly devoted board of directors."
LA Opera's first new staging of La Bohème since 1993
September 14, 22, 25 and 28, October 2 and 6, 2019
The struggles and triumphs of impoverished young Parisian artists are portrayed in a staging new to Los Angeles. Created by the brilliantly innovative director Barrie Kosky, this presentation is currently on the stage for its production premiere at the Komische Oper Berlin, the company Mr. Kosky leads. James Conlon conducts a cast that includes tenor Saimir Pirgu as Rodolfo and soprano Marina Costa-Jackson in her company debut as Mimì. La Bohème will showcase the LA Opera Chorus, led throughout the season by Resident Conductor Grant Gershon.
Renée Fleming headlines The Light in the Piazza
Music and lyrics by Adam Guettel; book by Craig Lucas
October 12, 13, 17, 18, 19 (matinee and evening) and 20, 2019
One of the most beloved performers of our time, Renée Fleming stars as an American tourist in Florence whose daughter falls in love with a handsome local dreamer. The enchanting Broadway musical, which won the 2005 Tony Awards for Best Original Score and Best Orchestrations, comes in a touring semi-staged production directed by Daniel Evans and produced by Scenario Two, Ltd.
Javier Camarena in recital
October 20, 2019
The superstar Mexican tenor, who made his LA Opera debut in 2017 as Nadir in The Pearl Fishers, returns for his Los Angeles recital debut, joined by pianist Ángel Rodríguez.
Revival of smash-hit staging of The Magic Flute
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
November 16, 21 and 23, December 1, 12 and 15, 2019
LA Opera's animation-driven production of Mozart's fantastical masterpiece created a sensation when it was previously seen here in 2013 and 2016. The Magic Flute returns to delight audiences in four performances conducted by James Conlon and two performances conducted by Grant Gershon. Created by Barrie Kosky and the British theater company 1927, the production has now been presented by dozens of theaters on three (soon to be four) continents. In a breathtaking evocation of the silent film era, the onstage cast members-including superstar bass Ildebrando D'Arcangelo as Sarastro-interact seamlessly with projected animations that brilliantly capture the masterpiece's delightful blend of high comedy and adventure.
Danielle De Niese stars in world premiere of Eurydice
Music by Matthew Aucoin; libretto by Sarah Ruhl
February 1, 8, 14, 16, 20 and 23, 2020
Composer-conductor Matthew Aucoin conducts the premiere staging of his new opera, based on librettist Sarah Ruhl's acclaimed play of the same name. Hailed by the New York Times Magazine as "opera's coolest soprano," Danielle De Niese stars in this modern-age update of the Orpheus legend, retold from the heroine's point of view. Mary Zimmerman directs a production that will subsequently travel to the Metropolitan Opera. Notably, Mr. Aucoin, Ms. Ruhl and Ms. Zimmerman are all winners of the MacArthur Fellowship "Genius Grant". (Genius, apparently, loves company.)
A new role for Plácido Domingo in the company premiere of Roberto Devereux
February 22 and 27, March 1, 5, 8 and 14, 2020
Spanish soprano Davinia Rodríguez makes her company debut as England's Queen Elizabeth I in LA Opera's first-ever presentation of Donizetti's royal tragedy. The opera is conducted by Eun Sun Kim, who makes her company debut. With a set inspired by Shakespeare's Globe Theatre, the staging by director Stephen Lawless has previously won acclaim in Toronto, Dallas and San Francisco. In the title role, Ramón Vargas portrays the queen's imperiled lover, charged with treason, and Plácido Domingo makes his role debut as the Duke of Nottingham, the wronged husband caught up in Devereux's web of deceit.
Pelléas et Mélisande returns to LA Opera for the first time since 1995
May 2, 10, 14, 17, 20 and 23, 2020
James Conlon conducts a new-to-Los-Angeles production of Debussy's enigmatic operatic masterpiece. David McVicar's staging, which comes from Scottish Opera, captures an exquisitely nuanced dream world where forbidden love blossoms. In the title roles, the captivating Kate Lindsey returns opposite baritone Yunpeng Wang. The cast also includes Christopher Purves as Golaud and Nancy Maultsby as Geneviève, with the great Willard White, who made his company debut in 1995 as Golaud, returning to the company for the first time since then, now singing the role of King Arkel.
George Frideric Handel
May 8, 2020; concert performance
Harry Bicket conducts The English Concert, the globe crossing period-instrument orchestra, for the company premiere of a Baroque masterpiece, full of brazenly amoral characters doing dastardly deeds. Soprano Lucy Crowe sings the title role, joined by a cast that includes star countertenors Iestyn Davies and Anthony Roth Costanzo.
Christian Lacroix designs costumes for a new Marriage of Figaro
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
June 6, 14, 17, 20, 25 and 28, 2020
James Conlon conducts Mozart's sparkling masterpiece in a new co-production with the Théâtre des Champs-Elysées (Paris) created by filmmaker James Gray, with scenery by Santo Loquasto and costumes by fashion designer Christian Lacroix. The cast is led by Craig Colclough as wily Figaro and Ying Fang in her company debut as Susanna, with Christopher Maltman and Guanqun Yu as Count and Countess Almaviva, and Rihab Chaieb as Cherubino.
Film by Alfred Hitchcock; score by Bernard Herrmann
October 25, 26 (matinee and evening), 27, 30 and 31, 2019
LA Opera's annual Halloween mash-up of opera and cinema returns to the spectacular Theatre at Ace Hotel with screenings of Alfred Hitchcock's 1960 masterpiece of horror, featuring live performances of composer Bernard Herrmann's classic soundtrack score. Louis Lohraseb conducts the LA Opera Orchestra.
Presented at the Theatre at Ace Hotel (929 S. Broadway, Los Angeles, CA 90015)
Music by Du Yun; libretto by Royce Vavrek
May 1 and 3, 2020
LA Opera's multi-season collaboration with Beth Morrison Projects continues with the West Coast premiere of the Pulitzer Prize-winning opera by Du Yun, a hard-hitting allegory of human trafficking in modern times. Describing her score to NPR, the astonishingly creative Du Yun said that it's filled with "a lot of music that matters to me dearly, from Renaissance to chant to meticulously notated modern music to screaming songs that I like to sing."
Presented at The Broad Stage (1310 11th St, Santa Monica, CA 90401)
For more information about LA Opera's Off Grand initiative, visit LAOpera.org/OffGrand.
This multidimensional countywide initiative (January through March, 2020) is inspired by LA Opera's upcoming world premiere of Matthew Aucoin's Eurydice. The festival will upend the ancient myth, introducing daring new understandings of its enduring hold on us. We'll say good-bye to our vague preconceptions and misconceptions about this mythic woman who gets left behind in the underworld; instead we'll let Eurydice speak for herself, through a wide range of performances, conversations and happenings, with a special emphasis on works created by female artists.
Events include an "Orphic soundwalk" through Grand Park, created by theater maker Marike Splint; the new dance piece Underworld/Underpass presented by Heidi Duckler Dance under the historic 7th Street Bridge; screenings of Kandis Williams' performance piece Eurydice and of the Academy Award-winning 1960 film Black Orpheus at the Hammer Museum; Ricky Ian Gordon's song cycle Orpheus and Eurydice for soprano, clarinet and piano, presented at Boston Court Theatre; and much more.
For more information about festival events, visit LAOpera.org/EurydiceFound.
Many thousands of Angelenos experience LA Opera throughout the year, and not just through the musical events presented on the stage. In its longstanding belief that the arts are essential to building our community, the company strives to ensure that everyone can experience or participate in opera. To that end, LA Opera presents a variety of outreach and family offerings, experienced by more than 135,000 people of all ages each season.
Highlights of these initiatives include (to mention just a few):
- Saturday Mornings at the Opera (February 8 and April 25, 2020)
Interactive, hour-long performances, with art and music-making activities for kids. Presented in the Eva and Marc Stern Grand Hall at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion (135 N. Grand Avenue, Los Angeles, CA 90012).
- The Festival Play of Daniel (May 8 and 9, 2020)
James Conlon conducts a medieval music drama based on the biblical tale of Daniel in the lion's den. Featuring more than 400 professional, amateur and student performers, the family-friendly opera is presented free of charge. Presented at the Cathedral of Our Lady of the Angels (555 W. Temple Street, Los Angeles, CA 90012).
- Great Opera Choruses (June 7, 2020)
Grant Gershon conducts the LA Opera Chorus in a fun-filled concert featuring audience participation. Presented at The Soraya (18111 Nordhoff Street, Northridge, CA 91330-8448).
- Community Circle (ongoing through the season)
Over 150 free or low-cost tickets are set aside in the orchestra section for every mainstage performance to accommodate students, low-income senior centers, nonprofit service organizations and underserved community groups. (To learn more, visit LAOpera.org/CommunityCircle.)
Season subscription tickets for the 2019/20 season are now available, starting at $109 for all six mainstage opera productions; subscribers to all six will receive free tickets to The Light in the Piazza. Tickets for Psycho, Angel's Bone, Rodelinda and the Javier Camarena recital are currently for sale only with subscription packages. For more information, please visit LA Opera's website at LAOpera.org or call LA Opera's box office at 213.972.8001.
Unless otherwise specified, performances take place at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion (135 North Grand Avenue, Los Angeles, 90012).
Visit LAOpera.org for continually updated casting information and performance dates.
Artist headshots and production photographs are available on the LA Opera Press Gallery: LAOpera.org/press/Press-Photos
All programs, artists and dates are subject to change.
Under the leadership of Plácido Domingo (Eli and Edythe Broad General Director), James Conlon (Richard Seaver Music Director) and Christopher Koelsch (Sebastian Paul and Marybelle Musco President and CEO), LA Opera has become one of America's most exciting and ambitious opera companies, dedicated to staging imaginative new productions, world premiere commissions and inventive productions of the classics that preserve foundational works while making them feel fresh and compelling. The company also presents a robust variety of educational programming and community engagement offerings, experienced by more than 135,000 people each season. In addition to its mainstage performances at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion, the company explores unusual repertoire each season through the Off Grand initiative, performed in a variety of venues throughout Los Angeles. Its objectives are to serve a broader geographical area, increase the diversity of the audience and expand the range of experiences available to existing audiences. To learn more, please visit LAOpera.org.