Straz Center's Opera Tampa Announces 2025 Season

Season includes masterpieces by Bernstein, Donizetti and Puccini.

By: Apr. 19, 2024
Straz Center's Opera Tampa Announces 2025 Season
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Straz Center's Opera Tampa has announced its 2025 season featuring the work of Leonard Bernstein, Gaetano Donizetti and Giacomo Puccini.

Straz Center's Opera Tampa has been giving audiences their fix since 1996 and presents a lineup for 2025 worthy of a standing ovation. It includes two Opera Tampa premieres and a fresh production of a perennial favorite − in all, a blend of American and Italian fare that will appeal to both die-hard fans and newcomers.  

The season includes our first-ever presentation of Leonard Bernstein's Candide, based on the satire by Voltaire. Then comes an original staging of Gaetano Donizetti's Don Pasquale, set not in the Rome of the original story, but here at home − in Ybor City. The season wraps up with that favorite tear-jerker, Giacomo Puccini's La Bohème. 

“Opera Tampa has worked hard to craft a season that covers the gamut of emotion from laughter to heartache to tears,” said Artistic Director Robin Stamper. “We hope audiences will enjoy the season as much as we are anticipating performing it for them. And” Stamper continued, “the season serves as a wonderful precursor to what promises to be a spectacular 30th anniversary season in 2026.” 

Straz Center's Opera Tampa 2025 season:



Friday, Jan. 31, 2025, at 8 p.m.

Sunday, Feb. 2, 2025, at 2 p.m.

Ferguson Hall

West Side Story may be Leonard Bernstein's best-known work, but the overture to Candide is the composer personified in every note. It crystallizes the action of what follows − the seldom-performed comic operetta − a rare gem that launches our 2025 season.  

Based on the once-banned French satire by Voltaire, Candide is the story of a young man under the thrall of Leibniz's philosophy of optimism and his disillusionment with life's hardships. In his coming-of-age parody, Voltaire drives home the point that evil serves no purpose and positivity is absurd. 

In this original, first-time production, singers will dress in 18th-century elegance as they traverse Bernstein's deliciously modern score from 1956. With this witty music, the composer jostles the ambiguities of Voltaire's novel and asks how our “capacity for laughter is nobler than our divine gift of suffering.'' 



Friday, March 7, 2025, at 8 p.m.

Sunday, March 9, 2025, at 2 p.m.

Ferguson Hall

The author of 65 operas, Donizetti was no slacker, and Lucia di Lammermoor, L'elisir d'amore and Don Pasquale still hold sway in theaters around the world. Straz Center's Opera Tampa offers a fresh take on Pasquale, a masterpiece that represents the golden tradition of opera. But don't expect the usual setting in Rome − the action of this creative new production takes place in our own Ybor City, so it's sure to generate local excitement. 

The opera tells the story of the bachelor Don Pasquale, who wants his rebellious nephew, Ernesto, to marry a wealthy woman so he can leave him out of his will. Despite his age, Don Pasquale also wants to marry and have a child as an heir to his fortunes, but trickery turns things around in the composer's tribute to commedia dell'arte. Its breezy pace and plot, comic twists and soaring songs all make this an ideal intro for first-time operagoers. 



Friday, April 11, 2025, at 8 p.m.

Sunday, April 13, 2025, at 2 p.m.

Ferguson Hall

Who doesn't adore La Bohème? With its tragic lovers, touching arias and potent emotional insight, this lyric masterpiece seems inexhaustible, as Straz Center's Opera Tampa returns to its classic roots. Audiences bond with the struggling bohemians because to be carefree and young is romantic, and when illness intrudes on the plan, everybody ends up singing. That's what opera is about, and it doesn't get much better than in Puccini's most resilient work. 

Opera Tampa will take you back to Paris in 1830, where penniless, cold and starving characters thrive on tunes that come from the heart. Each time Rodolfo and Mimi embrace − and the cast ponders the transience of life and art − it's sentimental and endearing, and to get through Si, mi chiamano Mimi, you'll need a handkerchief. Better bring two. 

Casts, conductors and other creative team members for the 2025 Opera Tampa season will be announced later.

In addition to the three mainstage performances, the Opera Tampa season also incorporates a variety of special events including performances by the Opera Tampa Singers, pre- and post-performance receptions for Opera Tampa League donors and Carnevale, Opera Tampa's annual fundraiser. Information on these programs, including dates, times, prices, etc. will be announced later.


Straz Center's Opera Tampa provides meaningful arts education and community engagement experiences for children and adults throughout the year.

During the last decade, the Opera Tampa Singers have engaged more than 70,000 students, teachers, families and seniors in the joy of opera at more than 300 locations throughout the Tampa Bay region. This comprehensive outreach program includes school assemblies, pop-up performances, artist residencies and so much more.

And every year, hundreds of students – many experiencing opera for the first time – attend dress rehearsals of Opera Tampa mainstage productions. From sound check to orchestra tuning to lights down, they get a peek behind the curtain as the productions unfold before their eyes.


Current Opera Tampa season ticket holders will receive renewal invoices in May and must renew by June 7 to guarantee their seats. Patrons also can sign up now to become new season ticket holders. Prices for the three-show season package range from $114 to $409.50. For more information, call the Straz Center Ticket Sales Office at 813.229.STAR (7827) or outside the Tampa Bay area at 800.955.1045 or visit Individual opera tickets will go on sale Nov. 25.

For more information about Straz Center's Opera Tampa and its upcoming events, please visit


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