Videos

2016/17 Season Trailer

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2015: A Year in Review

It has been a milestone season at LA Opera. During the latter half of our 29th season, we presented some of the most engaging and successful productions in the company’s history: a masterful west coast premiere of The Ghosts of Versailles, an engaging cinematic cross-over opera, Hercules vs. Vampires, and an epic avant-garde opera in Dog Days. Our 30th Anniversary Season has started off with a bang. Plácido Domingo’s 147th role debut as the title character in Gianni Schicchi, double-billed with Pagliacci, a contemporary classic, Moby-Dick, a sold-out run of Song from the Uproar, and a beloved bel canto masterpiece, Norma have all wowed Los Angeles audiences since September. Throughout the year, we’ve also had continued success with various initiatives that promote the arts in the greater Los Angeles Community, including our Cathedral Project and Opera Camp.

Below we’ve gathered a few articles and videos we’ve created throughout the year and additional photos are featured in our 2015: A Year in Review Pinterest gallery.

The Ghosts of Versailles

Take a sneak peek behind-the-scenes at The Ghosts of Versailles set and costumes as well as a preview from the show.

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Designing The Magic Flute: Roaring Twenties Fantasy Film

The Magic Flute is a roaring-twenties set vision. It has the beauty of a classic Louise Brooks film (like Pandora’s Box) , but live. Here, the production team – Suzanne Andrade, Barrie Kosky, and Paul Barritt – talk about the concept behind their vision for Mozart’s fantasy opera.

How did you come up with the idea of staging The Magic Flute with 1927?
Barrie Kosky
(stage director; Intendent of the Komische Oper Berlin): The Magic Flute is the most frequently performed German-language opera, one of the top ten operas in the world. Everyone knows the story; everybody knows the music; everyone knows the characters. On top of that, it is an “ageless” opera, meaning that an eight-year-old can enjoy it as much as an octogenarian can. So you start out with some pressure when you undertake a staging of this opera. I think the challenge is to embrace the heterogeneous nature of this opera. Any attempt to interpret the piece in only one way is bound to fail. You almost have to celebrate the contradictions and inconsistencies of the plot and the characters, as well as the mix of fantasy, surrealism, magic and deeply touching human emotions.

The Magic Flute (2016); Photo: Craig T. Mathew

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Sneak Peek Behind-the-Scenes of The Magic Flute

Our 2014 production of Mozart’s The Magic Flute marked the first time in opera that all physical scenery was entirely replaced by video projection. A marvel of Suzanne Andrade and Barrie Kosky’s 1927 inspiration, this Flute took us back to the roaring twenties in cinematic style.

This upcoming February, The Magic Flute returns to wow more Los Angeles audiences.

The Magic Flute (2016); Photo: Craig T. Mathew

The Magic Flute (2016); Photo: Craig T. Mathew

Take a sneak peek behind-the-scenes below to see how some of the tech for the show works.

Where can you find Pamina?

Pamina, daughter stands on a tiny revolving door platform that pivots out of the wall that serves as a projection screen. She is harnessed and buckled into the wall.  Monostatos (Sarastro’s slave) stands on the first level of the stage. All other scenic elements are video projections.

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Norma Sneak Peek

Get a sneak peek of Norma above

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Music Monday: Erwin Schrott Tackles A Latin Classic

    Erwin Schrott performing “El dia que me quieras” in Vienna

Bass-baritone Erwin Schrott may have skyrocketed to fame as the title character in Don Giovanni, but his interpretations of classic Latin songs are also not to be missed. One of these interpretations is “El dia que me quieras,” a tango standard originally composed and performed by famous Argentinian singer, Carlos Gardel, for his film of the same name.

Erwin Schrott and Jose Feliciano; Photo: Thommy Mardo

This upcoming Saturday night, “El dia que me quieras” will be the first song Schrott sings to kick off his Cuba Amiga concert, Schrott will be joined by an ensemble of outstanding classical and jazz musical friends from around the world, including special guest José Feliciano, the legendary singer and guitarist. Taking the audience on a musical journey through Latin America, Cuba Amiga delivers a thrilling international spectrum of Latin rhythms: bolero, salsa, flamenco, timba, rumba, cha-cha, samba and tango.

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Man vs. Whale

Watch an epic battle of Man vs. Whale, Moby-Dick Edition, above

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Moby-Dick Sneak Peek

Get a sneak peek of Jake Heggie’s Moby-Dick above

Moby-Dick sets sail for one last time today, wowing audiences with masterful staging. In case you’ve missed the Moby-Dick love these past few weeks, check out a few of the below articles and see why Moby-Dick is a classic American opera everyone should experience.

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Moby-Dick Highlights Reel

Watch the best of Moby-Dick above

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Moby-Dick Timelapse

Watch the Moby-Dick set come to life above

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Everything You’ve Ever Wanted To Know About Moby-Dick

Moby-Dick sets sail for one last time today, wowing audiences with masterful staging. In case you’ve missed the Moby-Dick love these past few weeks, we’ve collected a bunch of articles and videos for you to check out and see why Moby-Dick is a classic American opera everyone should experience.

Get To Know Moby-Dick

Jay Hunter Morris as Captain Ahab in Moby-Dick (2015); Photo: Craig T. Mathew

Jay Hunter Morris as Captain Ahab in Moby-Dick (2015); Photo: Craig T. Mathew

7 Questions with Jay Hunter Morris

In this edition of questions, learn more about Jay Hunter Morris, the man behind Captain Ahab.

Talking Life, Opera, and Moby-Dick with Musa Ngqungwana

Musa Ngqungwana’s life has always been filled with music. Growing up in Port Elizabeth and later Cape Town, Ngqungwana’s culture was infused with music. There were songs sung at births, weddings, celebrations, songs sung at death, and even gender specific songs sung perhaps to a sweetheart. With the advent of Christian culture and dogma introduced by the British missionaries in early 20th Century South Africa, a huge choral movement swept through the nation and a slew of community choirs and plays opened up. By the time Ngqungwana was born, it had become customary to have community choirs and neighborhood plays. It was at middle school that a young Ngqungwana joined the choir to be close to a girl he loved at the time. While Ngqungwana says he “failed miserably” to win the girl’s affections, the choir stole his heart and he kept singing in the years to come.

5 Questions with Joshua Guerrero

Joshua Guerrero didn’t grow up dreaming of a career in opera, and his path towards opera stardom is anything but ordinary. He always loved singing. Yet, it was only after Guerrero joined a choir at the seminary where he studied theology that his opera journey began.

Morgan Smith on Starbuck and Contemporary Opera

Throughout his career, baritone Morgan Smith has portrayed everything from traditional roles (Escamillo in Carmen at Vancouver Opera) to exciting new contemporary work (Lassiter in Craig Bohmler’s upcoming Riders of the Purple Sage at Arizona Opera).

Moby-Dick: No Book Report Required

This is the perfect opera to get the would-be reader – intimidated by the sheer size of Melville’s book – a rich, live experience of the Moby-Dick story.

Music Monday: Moby-Dick Overture

Melville’s tale of obsession, the nature of good and evil, and the search for the elusive, titular, white whale is set to an evocative score by famed American composer, Jake Heggie (Dead Man Walking). When Heggie describes tackling the mammoth tale, he speaks of finally finding the music of Moby’s universe in four simple chords. These chords capture the spirit and yearning inherent in Melville’s story and resurface throughout the rest of the score, in a haunting fashion.

Ship Anatomy: Moby-Dick Edition

Recreating a ship on stage can take many forms. A ship can be represented by actors physically moving their bodies to form a boat on stage, or it can be a giant prop that the story’s action revolves around. An image of a ship can even be projected on a scrim on stage to represent what’s not physically on stage. In Robert Brill’s grand set design for Moby-Dick, the ship consumes the entire stage. The Pequod, as the whaling ship is called, can be seen from various sides depending on the act and there are multiple parts to make this ship seem very real to singers and audience members alike.

James Conlon Invites You To Moby-Dick

Maestro Conlon is very excited about conducting the upcoming production, Moby-Dick, opening October 31st. Check out why he loves Jake Heggie’s opera and why he thinks you should see it too.

Whale Watching

Moby-Dick Highlights Reel

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Vocal Fireworks: Angela Meade on Singing Norma

Watch Angela Meade Chat About Singing Norma

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A Night in the Life of Angela Meade

What A Night in the Life of Angela Meade above

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James Conlon Invites You To Moby-Dick

Jay Hunter Morris as Captain Ahab in Moby-Dick (2015); Photo: Craig T. Mathew

Jay Hunter Morris as Captain Ahab in Moby-Dick (2015); Photo: Craig T. Mathew

Maestro Conlon is very excited about conducting the upcoming production, Moby-Dick, opening October 31st. Check out why he loves Jake Heggie’s opera and why he thinks you should see it too.

Moby-Dick is a classic American tale that’s wonderful to experience live. Yet, to enjoy Moby-Dick fully, take a look behind-the-scenes to see how the production has come together.

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Everything You’ve Ever Wanted To Know About Song from the Uproar

Bold. Dreamlike. Visionary. These are all words that describe Missy Mazzoli’s Song from the Uproar. They also describe the opera’s real life protagonist, Isabelle Eberhardt. Have you missed some of our Song from the Uproar love this past month? Have no fear! We’ve collected a bunch of articles and videos that truly show how captivating Song from the Uproar is.

Get To Know Song from the Uproar

LA Opera and Beth Morrison Bring New York’s Indie Opera Scene West

LA Opera and Beth Morrison have joined forces again to present two of Beth Morrison Projects’ (BMP) operas this season at REDCAT: Song from the Uproar and Anatomy Theater. Combining live musical performance and original film, Song from the Uproar (October 8-11), tells the incredible story of Isabelle Eberhardt (1877-1904), a young woman who left her life in Switzerland behind for an unfettered existence in the North African desert. Anatomy Theater follows the astonishing progression of an English murderess: from confession to execution and, ultimately, public dissection before a paying audience of fascinated onlookers. Through the miracle of opera, she sings through it all.

Abigail Fischer Explores The Mind of Isabelle Eberhardt

Opera is a place where all other art forms – art, film, even dance – meet to create a spectacular production. This is a convergence that’s very familiar to mezzo-soprano Abigail Fischer, who plays Isabelle Eberhardt in Missy Mazzoli’s Song from the Uproar. Fischer utilizes various artistic talents in the multimedia opera now showing at REDCAT. It is her haunting singing, however, that mesmerizes throughout the 75-minute opera.

Missy’s Song from the Uproar

“I hope that Song from the Uproar will provide audience members with an immersive theatrical experience and that they will be interested in learning more about Isabelle,” Mazzoli says. Judging from the passion of the artists involved, it is likely her hopes will prove fruitful.

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“You Are The Dust” from Song from the Uproar

Watch “You Are The Dust” from Song from the Uproar above

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Song from the Uproar: About Isabelle Eberhardt

Learn about Isabelle Eberhardt and Song from the Uproar above

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Gianni Schicchi Cast Shout Outs – Opera at the Beach

The cast of Gianni Schicchi Says “Hello,’ to Audience Members at Santa Monica Pier

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Pagliacci Sneak Peek

Watch a Sneak Peek of Pagliacci above

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Everything You’ve Ever Wanted To Know About Gianni Schicchi/Pagliacci

Gianni Schicchi and Pagliacci make a fabulous pair for this year’s Season Opening. Blending comedy with tragedy from two wonderful composers, these operas have made an impact both at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion and at Santa Monica Pier. Have you missed some of the Gianni Schicchi/Pagliacci magic? Have no fear! We’ve collected a bunch of articles and videos for you to check out and see why so many Angelenos (and non-Angelenos alike) are flocking to see this double-bill.

Get To Know Gianni Schicchi/Pagliacci

All Is Bustling On The Opera Front

Weeks before opening night, Dorothy Chandler Pavilion bustles with preparations for the upcoming opera season. As summer draws to a close, props are unpacked and organized, costume fittings occur, large sets are unloaded, and rehearsals are in full swing for Gianni Schicchi and Pagliacci.

A Donkey Named Sue

Making his operatic debut in this month’s upcoming production of Pagliacci is none other than a donkey named Sue (aptly named after the Johnny Cash song, “A Boy Named Sue”). This tough leading animal arrived this week with his handler in tow, who will be a supernumerary in the show.

Music Monday: Pagliacci Prologue

Pagliacci opens not with a love triangle scene between Canio, Nedda, and Silvio, but instead with a clown. This is Tonio, the fool of Canio’s troupe. He emerges and addresses the audience directly—“Si puo, si puo,” asking for indulgence.

5 Favorite Things From This Week’s Gianni Schicchi/Pagliacci Rehearsals

There’s a lot to be said about LA Opera’s opening show, a double bill of Gianni Schicchi and Pagliacci. We’ve been watching rehearsals all week and have compiled a list of a few of our favorite things.

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