Community Conversations are exciting and thought–provoking collaborations with well-known experts in diverse fields discussing the powerful themes in our 2015–2016 Season. All events are open to the public and free of charge.

Tosca: Religion and Revolution


Monday, November 16, 2015 at 7:00pm

LOCATION: Timken Museum of Art, Balboa Park, San Diego
DIRECTIONS/PARKING: Click Here for directions and parking information
HOST: Dr. Nicolas Reveles, Director of Education and Community Engagement, San Diego Opera
SPEAKER: Alyssa Goldstein Sepinwall, Ph.D., History Department, California State University - San Marcos

Puccini’s opera Tosca was based on a play by Victorien Sardou, a play set in a very specific time and place: June 14th, 1800, Rome, during the Battle of Marengo, a decisive battle in Napoleon’s successful attempt to chase the Austrians out of Italy. The story, although fictional, is set against a very real historical period rife with revolution, political struggles and constant challenges against a centuries-long relationship between church and state. Join Dr. Alyssa Sepinwall and Nic Reveles as they dig in to this fascinating period in European history when countries were still reeling from the effects of the French Revolution.

Tosca: 115 Years of Great Performances

Thursday, October 29, 2015 at 7:00pm

LOCATION: Central Library Downtown, Neil Morgan Auditorium, 330 Park Boulevard, San Diego 92101
HOST: Dr. Nicolas Reveles, Director of Education and Community Engagement, San Diego Opera
SPEAKER: Dr. Ronald Shaheen, Musicologist, Singer, Voice Teacher, Lecturer

In a lively conversation between two opera scholars, Drs. Ron Shaheen and Nicolas Reveles survey the distinguished collection of great performers who have inhabited the roles of Tosca, Cavaradossi and Scarpia. Using audio recordings dating as far back as 1903 and video excerpts of more recent productions, you’ll get a glimpse at the evolution of vocal interpretation as well as some rewarding insights into the traditions that have become attached to this gripping opera. This Community Conversation celebrates sixty years of opera lectures at the Central Library, a continuing partnership with San Diego Opera since 1955.

Celebrate National Opera Week October 23- November 1
Learn more about National Opera Week: