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San Francisco Opera Announces Complete Programs For Schwabacher Recital Series Concerts

The series continues on Wednesday, April 6 and Wednesday, April 27.

San Francisco Opera Announces Complete Programs For Schwabacher Recital Series Concerts

The new season of the Schwabacher Recital Series, presented by San Francisco Opera Center and Merola Opera Program, continues on Wednesday, April 6 and Wednesday, April 27 at San Francisco's Dianne and Tad Taube Atrium Theater. Featuring recent and current San Francisco Opera Adler Fellows and Merola Opera Program alumni, the programs showcase emerging young artists from around the globe in the intimacy of a recital setting,

Originally scheduled to participate in the series on April 27, soprano Esther Tonea has been selected as a semi-finalist in the Metropolitan Opera Laffont Competition and will therefore be unable to perform in this recital. Third-year Adler Fellow and 2019 Merola participant, soprano Elisa Sunshine will join the April 27 program.



The next recital in the series, on April 6, features American mezzo-soprano Ashley Dixon, a 2018-19 Adler Fellow and 2015/2017 Merola Opera Program participant. Dixon mader her San Francisco 2018 debut in Jake Heggie's It's A Wonderful Life and has appeared in the Company's productions of Carmen, Rusalka, Manon Lescaut and Hansel and Gretel.

Her performance at the 2019 The Future Is Now concert earned rave reviews, with the San Francisco Chronicle observing: "She's got a robust instrument full of beguiling vocal colors ... as well as the formidable technical command to unleash streams of glittering coloratura with precision and panache."

Dixon made her Los Angeles Opera debut in 2020 as Sara in Roberto Devereux and recently portrayed Carmen in Hawaii Opera Theatre's production of The Tragedy of Carmen. Her future engagements include Annino in La Clemenza di Tito at the Ravinia Festival and Adalgisa in Norma with Festival Opera.

Joining Dixon on stage is Ukrainian pianist and collaborator Kseniia Polstiankina Barrad, who recently finished her third year as an Adler Fellow. She was a 2018 participant of the Merola Opera Program. As an Adler Fellow, Barrad was part of the music staff for Carmen, Manon Lescaut, Fidelio and Così fan tutte. This season she joins the music staff of both San Francisco Opera and the Metropolitan Opera.

Dixon and Barrad will perform an array of works, with particular emphasis on the French and Spanish repertoire. Featured composers include Joaquín Turina, Claude Debussy, Reynaldo Hahn, Manuel De Falla and Carlos Guastavino.



On April 27, the third recital in the 2022 Schwabacher Recital Series, the concert will showcase four 2019 Merola Opera Program participants and current San Francisco Opera Adler Fellows soprano Elisa Sunshine, baritone Timothy Murray, bass Stefan Egerstrom and pianist Andrew King performing works by Jean Sibelius, Libby Larsen, Jonathan Dove, Cyril Scott, Erich Wolfgang Korngold and Francis Poulenc.

Celebrated for her "blend of vocal sparkle and theatrical charisma" by the San Francisco Chronicle, Elisa Sunshine recently made her San Francisco Opera debut as the Shepherd Boy in Tosca and her house debut with Pensacola Opera as the Queen of the Night in Die Zauberflöte.

Heralded for his "firm, flexible baritone" (New York Times) and "swaggering, rakish" stage presence (Opera News), Timothy Murray bowed with the Company for the first time this past fall, portraying Sciarrone in Tosca. As a participant in the 2019 Merola Opera Program, he created the role of Paul in Heggie's If I Were You.

Third-year Adler Fellow Stefan Egerstrom made his San Francisco Opera debut as the jailer in Tosca and appeared in the Company's new production of Fidelio as the second prisoner. With Queen City Opera, he performed Hunding in Die Walküre and King René in Iolanta.

Pianist Andrew King studied under Warren Jones at the Manhattan School of Music. As a pianist/coach with the Merola Opera Program, he helped prepare the world premiere of If I Were You under the baton of Nicole Paiement.


Sidney Outlaw AND Warren Jones

The final Schwabacher recital, on July 28, shines a spotlight on the artistry of baritone Sidney Outlaw and esteemed pianist Warren Jones. The program will focus on their latest collaboration, a new album that pays homage to 20th-century American song entitled Lament, featuring works by Ricky Ian Gordon, Robert Owens, Dorothy Rudd Moore, Harry T. Burleigh and the text of Langston Hughes.


Tickets for general seating are $30; a series package for the remaining three recitals is $75. Tickets can be purchased at the San Francisco Opera Box Office (301 Van Ness Avenue) in person, by phone at (415) 864-3330 and online at Please note: The three-recital package is available only in-person or by phone. Student rush tickets, subject to availability, are available for $15 at each venue 30 minutes prior to each recital. (Limit of two tickets per person; valid ID is required.) Artists, programs, schedules and ticket prices are subject to change.

The April 6 and 27 recitals take place at 7:30 p.m. at the Dianne and Tad Taube Atrium Theater, a state-of-the-art performance venue utilizing the Constellation acoustic system from Berkeley-based Meyer Sound. The Taube Atrium Theater is part of San Francisco Opera's Diane B. Wilsey Center for Opera, located on the fourth floor of the Veterans Building at 401 Van Ness Avenue in San Francisco.

The final recital, on July 28, takes place at 7:30 p.m. at the San Francisco Conservatory of Music Caroline H. Hume Concert Hall at 50 Oak Street in San Francisco.

San Francisco Opera requires all patrons aged 12 and older, who are eligible, to show proof of booster shot received at least 7 days prior to the event or performance, in addition to proof of full vaccination (defined as two weeks after your final shot), along with a matching photo ID. In addition, proof of vaccination is required for all children ages 5 to 11 (defined as two weeks after their final shot). Unvaccinated children are not permitted.

All patrons must wear well-fitted masks that cover their nose, mouth and chin when inside the facility unless they are actively eating or drinking. A non-vented N95 mask is recommended to provide maximum protection. A well-fitted mask does not include a scarf, ski mask, balaclava, bandana, turtleneck collar, single layer of fabric or any mask that has an unfiltered one-way exhaust valve. For complete information about the Company's health and safety protocols, visit

To ensure flexibility for patrons in this transitional season, no-fee exchanges will be accepted up to two hours before performances. Refunds will be available if patrons must miss the concert due to COVID. Refund requests must be made at least two hours before the performance.

The Schwabacher Recital Series is endowed in perpetuity by the generosity of celebrated Bay Area singer, scholar and teacher James Schwabacher and sponsored by the Merola Opera Program.

Yamaha is the official piano of San Francisco Opera. Pianos are generously provided by Piedmont Piano Company.

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