In order to help you better appreciate our operas, our Community Engagement program presents this series of introductory podcasts hosted by Nicolas Reveles. These brief ‘conversations’ can be enjoyed by opera fans as well as those who are new to the art form. Informal yet informative, this is a great way to prepare to come see the operas during our season.

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Monday, December 10, 2012

Some Random Thoughts on Opera

Taking a break from our series on voice-types for the 2013 Season, Dr. Nicolas Reveles, The Geisel Director of Education & Outreach for San Diego Opera, reflects on the meaning of opera, what it is about this art form that attracts us, why we go to the opera and what is the essence of it, what makes it 'tick'. You're invited to come along on a meditative journey about the artform that transforms us!


Tuesday, December 4, 2012

The Tenor in the 2013 Season

Tenors are considered by many audience members as the 'glories' of opera. What they do seems beautiful, athletic, stunning and unreasonable, all at once. Well, we have some wonderful tenor roles this upcoming season: Tonio in The Daughter of the Regiment, Samson in Samson and Delilah, and Radames in Aida. Tune in as Nicolas Reveles, the Geisel Director of Education and Outreach opens up the world of the operatic tenor in this week's installment.


Monday, November 19, 2012

Mezzo-Sopranos in our 2013 Season

There are two major mezzo-soprano roles in this upcoming opera season: Delilah in Saint-Saens' Samson and Delilah and the Princess Amneris in Verdi's Aida. Both roles are major dramatic commitments for the mezzo that demand lyricism and declamatory singing. Let Nicolas Reveles, our Director of Education and Outreach, give you a quick review of these two roles!


Wednesday, November 7, 2012

The Sopranos of the 2013 Season

Starting today, a new series of podcasts about the various voice-types that you'll hear in the 2013 Season. Let's start with the sopranos; we have three stunning roles for soprano this season in Marie from The Daughter of the Regiment, the corifea or 'chorister' from Murder in the Cathedral and Aida in the Verdi opera of the same name. Let Nicolas Reveles, Director of Education and Outreach, introduce you to the lovely music written for soprano by composers Donizetti, Pizzetti and Verdi in this exciting podcast!


Monday, October 29, 2012

What is Mariachi?

As we look forward to the presentation of Cruzar la cara de la luna, the first mariachi opera, we thought it would be interesting to take a look at mariachi style and its history. This is an easy, brief introduction to the style that you may think you know (but probably really don't!) Watch and listen to Nicolas Reveles, the Geisel Director of Education and Outreach, as he unfolds the style and history of mariachi for you.


Tuesday, October 16, 2012

The Orchestra in the 2013 Season

The orchestra is a major element in the presentation of an opera, and is foremost in the establishment of setting, time, emotion, psychological state...creating the 'sonic environment' for the telling of a powerful story. Watch and listen as Nicolas Reveles, Director of Education and Outreach for San Diego Opera, shares some important orchestral moments from the upcoming 2013 Season!


Thursday, October 4, 2012

The Chorus in 2013

Every opera has a chorus. Well, not quite every opera: Cruzar la cara de la luna doesn't have an 'official' chorus, although the band (in this case the Mariachi Vargas) joins in enthusiastically with some of the singers in the opera! But Daughter of the Regiment, Murder in the Cathedral, Samson and Delilah and Aida definitely DO have choruses, and great ones at that! Join Dr. Nicolas Reveles as he shares some of that wonderful music with you!


Tuesday, September 25, 2012

The Duet in the 2013 Season

Last week, arias: the solo 'songs' for singers in an opera. Today, duets: compositions or pieces for two singers in an opera. There are some stunning examples of duets this coming season, and Dr. Nicolas Reveles, the Geisel Director of Education and Outreach for San Diego Opera, gives you some examples for your listening (and educational!) pleasure.


Monday, September 17, 2012

The Aria in the 2013 Season

In a series of video podcasts Nicolas Reveles, The Geisel Director of Education and Outreach, will cover various elements of the operatic artform in order to help us get to know the 2013 International Season. We'll start with the aria, that one thing in opera that so many of us wait for, especially in operas that we know well. What about in operas that we don't quite know as well, like Murder in the Cathedral or Cruzar la cara de la luna? Tune in and find out!


Thursday, August 16, 2012

Aida: The Sound

Verdi's sound world for Aida conjures up the ancient environment of the story but never strays far from Italian opera at its grandest. Nicolas Reveles, Director of Education for San Diego Opera, gives you a brief summary of the special music carrying this story of a doomed love.


Thursday, August 16, 2012

Aida: The Look

The wonderful thing about Aida this time around is that it will be sporting a new 'look': the costume and set designs of internationally renowned fashion designer, Zandra Rhodes. Nicolas Reveles, Education Director of San Diego Opera, gives you a preview.


Thursday, August 16, 2012

Aida: The Story

Giuseppe Verdi's Aida is one of the best known repertory items in opera, but that doesn't mean that there aren't people out there who've never seen it! So here is a brief overview of the story which takes place in ancient Egypt during the time of the pharoahs. Education Director Nicolas Reveles takes you there! 


Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Murder in the Cathedral: The Sound

Although the story is English, influenced by English history and literature, the opera Murder in the Cathedral is Italian. It was written by Ildebrando Pizzetti and premiere at La Scala in 1958. And although the music is lyrical and quite approachable, it isn't your grandma's typical Italian opera! Listen to this brief overview of the music of this outstanding opera by Education Director Nicolas Reveles.


Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Murder in the Cathedral: The Look

San Diego Opera is building its own production of Murder in the Cathedral with sets designed by renowned designer Ralph Funicello. Get a brief preview of the look of Murder in this podcast by Education Director Nicolas Reveles.


Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Murder in the Cathedral: The Story

Based on the historical events surrounding the assassination of Thomas Becket, Archbishop of Canterbury by knights loyal to Henry II, King of England in 1170, the opera follows the story rather closely. Watch and listen as Director of Education Nicolas Reveles takes you through a brief summary of the story of this brilliant opera.


Monday, July 30, 2012

Samson and Delilah: The Sound

Grand French Romanticism at its best! That's the finest description that we can think of when trying to capture the essence of the wonderful music in Camille Saint-Saens Samson and Delilah. Hear a few brief excerpts, introduced by Education Director Dr. Nicolas Reveles, in this "fly through" to discover some of the melodic charms in this great biblical drama.


Monday, July 30, 2012

Samson and Delilah: The Look

Back by popular demand is the spectacular production from San Francisco Opera that you may have seen a number of seasons back, with the realistic, glitzy and colorful sets and costumes that bring the story of this exciting opera to life. Join Nicolas Reveles, Director of Education, for a few minutes to take glimpse at what's in store for you when you come to see Samson and Delilah.


Monday, July 30, 2012

Samson and Delilah: The Story

Here's a brief synopsis of Camille Saint-Saens' biblically based opera Samson and Delilah from Director of Education Nicolas Reveles. This summary is perfect for those of you who don't have a lot of time on your hands to prepare for opening night. Enjoy!


Friday, July 27, 2012

The Daughter of the Regiment: The Sound

Enjoy this brief description of the sound (the music) that you'll encounter in Donizetti's The Daughter of the Regiment. For an overview of the 2013 operas with Education Director, Nicolas Reveles, start here!


Friday, July 27, 2012

The Daughter of the Regiment: The Look

Here's a brief glimpse of the look for our production of The Daughter of the Regiment by Donizetti which comes from the Teatro Comunale di Bologna. For an overview of our 2013 Season with Education Director, Nicolas Reveles, start here!


Friday, July 27, 2012

The Daughter of the Regiment: The Story

Here's the first of a brand new series of seriously (!) short podcasts on the story, the look and the music of Donizetti's comedy, The Daughter of the Regiment. For a quick overview of the 2013 operas from Education Director Nicolas Reveles, start here!


Monday, July 16, 2012

The Daughter of the Regiment: An Overview

Donizetti was a formidable composer in his time and was the toast of Paris in 1840 when he had four operas running simultaneously at the city's largest theatres. Sounds a bit like Andrew Lloyd Webber, eh? Join Nicolas Reveles, Director of Education and Outreach, for an overview of this charming opera which logged 1,000 performances between its premiere and 1900 at the Opera Comique!


Monday, July 9, 2012

Aida, An Overview

Verdi's Aida is certainly the best-known of the operas we're producing in the 2013 Season. But do we really know this opera all that well? Watch and listen as Nicolas Reveles, The Geisel Director of Education and Outreach, takes another look at this perennial favorite, an opera with great music, great spectacle and great drama.


Monday, May 14, 2012

Murder in the Cathedral: An Overview

Ildebrando Pizzetti is not a composer known to most U.S. operagoers, but his opera Murder in the Cathedral which premiered at La Scala in 1958, made quite a splash when it first appeared. Based on the historical assassination of Thomas Becket in Canterbury Cathedral in 1170 and more specifically the T.S. Eliot verse-play about this event, the opera turned out to be a tour de force for bass, along the lines of Boris Godunov and King Philip. Nicolas Reveles, Director of Education and Outreach, explores this unusual and exciting entry in our 2013 season.


Monday, May 14, 2012

Samson and Delilah: An Overview

Camille Saint-Saens took his time turning his idea for an opera on this biblical subject (originally conceived as an oratorio) into reality and had to have some encouragement from his friend Franz Liszt to bring it to the stage. Nicolas Reveles, Director of Education and Outreach, explains it all for you as we look forward to the return of this sumptuous, brilliant French opera.


Monday, April 23, 2012

2013 International Season Overview

Here it is...the summary video podcast of the 2013 Season! Dr. Nicolas Reveles tells it all, an exciting preview of our best season ever with Donizetti's The Daughter of the Regiment, Saint-Saens' Samson and Delilah, Pizetti's Murder in the Cathedral, Verdi's Aida and the first mariachi opera ever written, Cruzar la cara de la luna (To cross the face of the moon) featuring Mariachi Vargas de Tecalitlan! An unbelievable season with extraordinary casts of singers and spectacular productions. Enjoy!


Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Meeting Rosina: Mezzo-soprano Silvia Tro Santafe

The ultimate independent woman, the most level-headed character in all of opera buffa, is surely Rosina in The Barber of Seville. We have a wonderful Rossini "specialist" in Spanish mezzo-soprano Silvia Tro Santafe who has the personality and the voice (!) for this wonderful role. Listen to Nicolas Reveles' interview with this debut artist who gives us some insight into this brilliant comedy.


Monday, April 16, 2012

Meeting Almaviva: Tenor John Osborn

The tenor always gets the girl, and The Barber of Seville is no exception. But it takes some wrangling, disguises and subterfuge to finally get Count Almaviva and his beloved Rosina together. Tenor John Osborn is certainly up to the task, a Rossini 'specialist' who is just coming off of a series of critically acclaimed performances of the composer's Otello. Listen in as Nicolas Reveles interviews this talented singer about his career and about the role.


Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Shades of Magritte: Herb Kellner, Stage Director

Herb Kellner is directing our upcoming production of Rossini's The Barber of Seville in a production original conceived by John Copley, a longtime guest director here at San Diego Opera. The production is based on the images and motifs that occur in the work of the Belgian surrealist painter Rene Magritte. Join Nicolas Reveles, the Geisel Director of Education and Outreach, in a discussion of the Magritte influences on this Barber and its unique look.


Friday, April 6, 2012

Meeting Figaro: An Interview with Lucas Meachem

Our final installment of the 2012 Season is upon us: Rossini's The Barber of Seville. In a free-wheeling interview with Geisel Director of Education and Outreach Nicolas Reveles, baritone Lucas Meachem talks about his roots, his musical upbringing and his special take on the character of Figaro, the pivotal character in Barber who pulls all the strings and pushes all the plot points. Enjoy!


Saturday, March 10, 2012

Meeting Don Pasquale: Bass, John Del Carlo

An old friend to the company, John Del Carlo has been involved with us since his days as a young artist in the mid-seventies. Tune in and hear his views on the basso buffo repertoire, his career and the role of Don Pasquale, a delightful conversation with Nicolas Reveles, Director of Education and Outreach. 


Monday, March 5, 2012

Meeting Ernesto: Tenor Charles Castronovo

Tenor Charles Castronovo was last with us as Nadir in The Pearl Fishers. According to this interview, his voice has darkened and he's been taking on heavier, albeit still lyrical, roles like Romeo (Gounod). In a wide-ranging conversation with Education Director Nicolas Reveles, Castronovo describes the vocal challenges involved in taking on Ernesto in Don Pasquale. Enjoy!


Thursday, March 1, 2012

Meet Danielle de Niese

In a fun, fast-paced interview, soprano Danielle de Niese talks about her career and her upcoming performances as Norina in Don Pasquale. Education Director Nicolas Reveles, as always, asks the right questions. Enjoy!


Saturday, February 18, 2012

Meeting Starbuck: Baritone Morgan Smith

One of the stars of the opera Moby Dick is baritone Morgan Smith who portrays Captain Ahab's first mate, Starbuck. The characters' conflict is at the heart of the opera. In a wide-ranging interview with Nicolas Reveles, Director of Education and Outreach, the singer discusses his career and how the role of Starbuck came to him through an earlier work with composer, Jake Heggie.


Saturday, February 18, 2012

An Interview with Jake Heggie and Gene Scheer--AUDIO ONLY!

In this audio-only and very special podcast, we offer an interview with the creators of Moby Dick, composer Jake Heggie and librettist Gene Scheer. They reflect on their work together and on the sometimes daunting task of taking an 800 page book and simmering it down into a piece for musical theatre, a stirring opera that's been exciting audiences since its premiere in 2010. Listen in as Nicolas Reveles, Director of Education and Outreach for San Diego Opera, questions them about their stunning work.


Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Meeting Ahab: Tenor, Ben Heppner

We've waited a long, long time for this; but we finally have the great Canadian heldentenor Ben Heppner in our cast of Moby Dick, singing the role of Captain Ahab. In this interview with Nicolas Reveles, the Geisel Director of Education and Outreach for San Diego Opera, the tenor talks about the creation of the role, its similarity to other roles he sings and the challenges of wearing a peg leg! Enjoy.


Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Meeting Queequeg: Bass-Baritone Jonathan Lemalu

Bass-baritone Jonathan Lemalu has had a meteoric rise in the opera world. This singer from a Samoan family in New Zealand is a favorite with conductors and audiences because of his natural presence, friendliness and, of course, his sumptuous voice. In this interview with Nicolas Reveles, Director of Education and Outreach, Jon talks about his background, his training and the role of Queequeg which he debuted at the world premiere of Jake Heggie's Moby-Dick at Dallas Opera in 2010.


Friday, February 3, 2012

An Interview with Pip: Soprano Talise Trevigne

What's it like to be the only woman in a cast literally overrun with men? Find out as soprano Talise Trevigne, who graced our stage last season as Micaela in Carmen, speaks with Nicolas Reveles, the Geisel Director of Education and Outreach. Talise talks about the opera Moby-Dick, its overwhelming music and the challenges of taking on a 'pants' role as Pip, the cabin boy of Captain Ahab. Not incidentally, her big moment in this opera is sung from 30 feet in the air! 


Wednesday, January 25, 2012

An Interview with Herod: Tenor, Allan Glassman

Tenor Allan Glassman sings all the big lyric Italian roles, roles like Otello and Canio. He comes to San Diego to sing a role often given to 'character' tenors, that of King Herod in Strauss's Salome. What a difference a voice makes! In a role that is often more 'spoken' than sung, Glassman makes a very good point of actually singing the role and stressing its lyrical potential. Enjoy this interivew with Geisel Director of Education and Outreach, Nicolas Reveles.


Thursday, January 19, 2012

An Interview with Jochanaan: Bass-Baritone Greer Grimsley

Bass-baritone Greer Grimsley usually comes to town toting the role of a villain: Pizarro in Fidelio, Telramund in Lohengrin, Scarpia in Tosca, and last season, Mephistopheles in Faust. He returns this season as the one 'good guy', the shining light in Salome, Jochanaan (John the Baptist). In this interview with Nicolas Reveles, our Director of Education and Outreach, he talks about the role, the opera and his career. Enjoy!


Thursday, January 12, 2012

An Interview with Salome: Soprano Lise Lindstrom

Today we welcome back one of our favorite sopranos, Lise Lindstrom, who had such a great success last season as Turandot. In this interview with Nicolas Reveles, the Geisel Director of Education and Outreach, she talks about her career, her recent debut at La Scala as the "ice princess" in Puccini's opera, and about the role of Salome. Enjoy!