Don Pasquale

The superbly melodic operas of Gaetano Donizetti represent a triumph of the human spirit over extreme adversities. Long before syphilis and bipolar disorder drove him into an insane asylum and then early death at age 51 in 1848, he had  ...

Dream of the Red Chamber: World Premiere

Ethnic support for opera in multi-ethnic San Francisco is a subject worth scholarly research, which is certainly not being offered here. These are only a few broad observations, leading to a point to be made soon. Italians  ...

Yo-Yo Ma and the Silk Road Ensemble

Life is complicated. More than one thing is going on whether we like it or not. This could be a definition of music too because it's a celebration and a leave-taking and we're always doing both. We say hello as  ...

The Music Of Strangers (2015)

We all want to be loved. We all want to belong. But what do you do if your house is bombed and everyone in it dies? Do you become bitter, or take the high road? And what do you do  ...

Shostakovich Under Stalin’s Shadow

Conductor Andris Nelsons and the Boston Symphony Orchestra continue their stellar series of performances of the works of Dmitri Shostakovich with their Deutsch Grammophon release “ Shostakovich Under Stalin’s Shadow,” a 2-cd set with their live performances of symphonies  ...

Jenůfa

Despite how musically rich and sensitive Janáček’s opera Jenůfa is, its grotesque storyline, which includes the murdering of a child, is not. It captures a sample of small-town life in Moravian Slovakia during the mid-1850s, which first influenced Gabriela Preissová  ...

Jenůfa, SF Opera

The last time I saw Karita Mattila in “Jenůfa” she played the title role, a young village girl madly in love with the town ne’er-do-well and secretly carrying his child to boot. Now, her gleaming voice burnished with maturity, the  ...