Ginger Costa-Jackson — Carmen
San Diego Opera debut. Italian-American mezzo-soprano Ginger Costa-Jackson is a graduate of the Metropolitan Opera’s Lindemann Young Artist Development Program, and a Samling Scholar. She recently performed the role of Rosina in The Barber of Seville with the Metropolitan Opera, and the title role in Bizet’s Carmen with the San Francisco Opera, and was joined by her two sisters in a Costa-Jackson sisters concert at the Nantucket Musical Arts Society. She made her debut at Opera de Paris as Despina in Così fan tutte, performed Carmen with the Michigan Opera House and Teatro de Bellas Artes, Rosina with the Santa Cruz Symphony, Opera Grand Rapids, and Nashville Opera, and the role of Moll in The Cradle will Rock with Opera Saratoga. Other notable appearances include Carmen with Vancouver Opera, Opera Grand Rapids, Glimmerglass Festival, and Virginia Opera, Puss in El Gato con botas with Gotham Chamber Opera, Lola in Cavalleria rusticana, Mercedes in Carmen, Smaragdi in Francesca da Rimini, Rosette in Manon for the Metropolitan Opera, Lola with the Gran Teatre del Liceu, Marchesa del Poggio in Verdi’s Un Giorno di Regno with Glimmerglass Opera, Musetta in La bohème with Musica Viva Hong Kong, Dorabella in Così fan tutte with Seattle Opera, Maddalena in Rigoletto with Los Angeles Opera, and Marie in Rossini’s Moise et Pharaon with the Collegiate Chorale at Carnegie Hall.
Robert Watson — Don José
San Diego Opera debut. American tenor Robert Watson, a native of Kansas City, made his professional debut as a Noble in Wagner’s Lohengrin with San Francisco Opera. The following season, Watson returned to SFO to create the role of Henry Cox in the world premiere of Picker’s Dolores Claiborne. He is a member of the ensemble of Deutsche Oper Berlin where he has performed a multitude of roles including Ismaele in Nabucco, Grigori in Boris Godunov, Bois-Rose in Les Huguenots, Cavaradossi in Tosca, Erik in The Flying Dutchman, Ismaele in Nabucco, and the messenger in Aïda. He recently made debuts with Opera Orchestre National Montpellier as Don José and Opera de Lille as Ismaele. He has been a two-time Filene Young Artist at Wolf Trap Opera where he sang Lieutenant B.F. Pinkerton in Madama Butterfly with the National Symphony Orchestra, Begearss in Corigliano’s The Ghosts of Versailles, and the titular character in Milhaud’s Le pauvre matelot. He is an alumnus of the Merola Opera Program at San Francisco Opera, the Opera Santa Barbara Studio, the Palm Beach Opera Benenson Young Artist Program, and the Dolora Zajick Institute for Young Dramatic Voices. On the concert stage he has appeared as the tenor soloist in Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9 with the Philadelphia Orchestra and the Kansas City Symphony, and in Verdi's Requiem with the Florence Masterwork's Choral Society. He has performed in recital at The Phillips Collection in Washington, DC. He attended the San Francisco Conservatory of Music and is a graduate of Oklahoma City University Bass School of Music.
Scott Conner — Escamillo
San Diego Opera debut. Notable engagements for American bass Scott Conner include Nerbulone in Eliogabalo for Dutch National Opera and Opéra National de Paris, Sparafucile in Rigoletto for both Semperoper Dresden and Portland Opera, Angelotti in Tosca for Palm Beach Opera, the Police Commissioner in Der Rosenkavalier for Royal Opera, Covent Garden, and the Metropolitan Opera, Angelotti in Tosca and Colline in La bohème for San Francisco Opera, Don Profondo in Il Viaggio a Reims and Zoroastro in Orlando for Zürich Opera, Tom in A Masked Ball for San Francisco Opera and Bayerische Staatsoper, Bernardino in Benvenuto Cellini for Dutch National Opera, Theseus in A Midsummer Night’s Dream for Festival d’Aix-en-Provence, Raimondo in Lucia di Lammermoor with L’Opéra de Lille; the roles of Colline, Nourabad, and un Frate with the Zürich Opera, and Zaretsky in Eugene Onegin for Glyndebourne Festival Opera. He was a member of the Semperoper Dresden Ensemble in 2012 where roles included Colline, Sparafucile in Rigoletto, Masetto in Don Giovanni and Don Basilio in The Barber of Seville. Other roles include Figaro in The Marriage of Figaro with Nashville Opera and Columbus Opera, the Commendatore and Masetto in Don Giovanni with Opera Cleveland, Alidoro in Cinderella with Opera New Jersey, and Curio in Giulio Cesare with Lyric Opera of Kansas City. He was also seen as a soloist in Handel’s Messiah with the National Symphony Orchestra at the John F. Kennedy Center in Washington D.C. He was the recipient of a 2012 Sara Tucker Study Grant from the Richard Tucker Foundation, and the 1st Prize Award in the 2012 Gerda Lissner Vocal Competition and the 2012 Loren L. Zachary Vocal Competition.
Sarah Tucker — Micaëla
San Diego Opera debut. American soprano Sarah Tucker was a National Semifinalist in the 2014 Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions and recently completed her second year as a member of the Arizona Opera Studio. She was recently heard as Nelly Nettleton in Arizona Opera’s innovative, multilingual production of Arizona Lady. Other notable appearances include Micaëla in
Carmen, Rosalba in Florencia en el Amazonas, Zerlina in Don Giovanni, the Page in Rigoletto, and Pamina in The Magic Flute for Arizona Opera, Jano in Jenufa for San Francisco Opera, Micaëla for Utah Opera, First Memory in War Stories with Gotham Chamber Opera and Opera Philadelphia, Gilda in Rigoletto with Opera Connecticut, Norina in Don Pasquale, Suor Dolcina in Suor Angelica, and Contessa Ceprano in Rigoletto with Crested Butte Music Festival, soloist for Handel’s Messiah for Lexington Philharmonic and the Christ Cathedral (Crystal Cathedral) in Orange County, CA., and the role of Tina in Flight with Opera Fayetteville.
Brian Vu — Moralès
San Diego Opera debut. Baritone Brian Vu was a resident artist with Pittsburgh Opera where he performed Baron Douphol in La traviata, Second Nazarene in Salome, Berardo in Riccardo Primo, Hannah before in As One, Calvin Griffith in The Summer King, John Brooke in Little Women, Leo Stein in 27, Fiorello and Figaro in The Barber of Seville. Other engagements include Schaunard in La bohème, The Happy Prince in Wilde Tales, Jazz Trio Baritone in Trouble in Tahiti and productions of Sweeney Todd and Candide at the Glimmerglass Festival, selections as Ramiro in L'heure espagnole with Santa Fe Opera, Moralès in Carmen at the Music Academy of the West, and Marquis d’Obigny in La traviata with the Wolf Trap Opera in collaboration with the National Symphony Orchestra and the Washington Chorus. A graduate of the Yale Opera Studio, his roles there include Count Almaviva in The Marriage of Figaro, Bartley in Riders to the Sea, Dapertutto in The Tales of Hoffmann, Dandini in Cinderella, Marcello in La bohème and Duke Robert in Iolanta. Previously with Opera UCLA, he performed Ottone in L’incoronazione di Poppea, Mercury in Orpheus in the Underworld, Narciso in Agrippina, Minskman in Flight and Jigger in Carousel.
Bernardo Bermudez — Dancairo
Venezuelan-American baritone Bernardo Bermudez made his Company mainstage debut in 2016’s Madama Butterfly as Prince Yamidori and was heard last season as a member of the Ensemble in 2018’s Maria de Buenos Aires and as a Sailor in Florencia en el Amazonas. He was a member of the ensemble in All Is Calm earlier this season. Notable operatic roles performed include Figaro in The Barber of Seville, Stanley Kowalski in A Streetcar Named Desire, Silvio in Pagliacci, Escamillo in Carmen, Valentin in Faust, Belcore in The Elixir of Love, Papageno in The Magic Flute, Count Almaviva in The Marriage of Figaro, Vidal Hernando in Luisa Fernanda, Scarpia in Tosca, Schaunard in La bohème, Alfio in Cavalleria Rusticana, Aeneas in Dido & Aeneas, Melchior in Amahl and The Night Visitors, Mercurio in L’incoronazione di Poppea, Teniente Cantalapiedra in Cecilia Valdes, Count Capulet in Romeo et Juliette, Marullo in Rigoletto, and Morald in Richard Wagner’s Die Feen. He recently performed the role of Diego Rivera in Frida at Long Beach Opera.
Patrick Blackwell — Zuniga
San Diego Opera debut. Bass-baritone Patrick Blackwell has appeared with the Boston Symphony Orchestra at the Tanglewood Festival, the Munich Philharmonic, the Lyric Opera of Chicago and the Los Angeles Opera. He trained and studied at the Juilliard School and began his career as a young artist with the Santa Fe Opera, Houston Opera Studio, the Merola Opera Program with San Francisco Opera, Opera Music Theatre International, and the Aspen Opera Theatre Center. Notable appearances include Leporello in Don Giovanni, Colline in La bohème, Zuniga, and Dr. Grenvil in La traviata for New York City Opera, Balthazar in Amahl and the Night Visitors for Chamber Opera of Chicago, Utah Opera and Des Moines Metro Opera, 1st Nazarene in Salome and Dr. Bartolo The Marriage of Figaro for Utah Opera, Joe in Showboat and Sarastro in The Magic Flute for Fresno Grand Opera, Ferrando in Il trovatore for Knoxville Opera, Monterone in Rigoletto and Sarastro for Union Avenue Opera, The King in Aida and Melitone in La forza del destino for New Jersey State Opera, and Tom in A Masked Ball for New Orleans Opera. With Chicago Lyric Opera Mr. Blackwell’s roles have included Burnah in Amistad, Henry Davis in Street Scene, Cal in Regina and The Duke of Verona in Romeo and Juliette. With Los Angeles Opera he has sung the Quartet Bass in The Ghosts of Versailles, Ratcliffe in Billy Budd, the Commissioner in Madama Butterfly, Simone and the Notary in Gianni Schicchi, 2nd Soldier in Salome, and Aye in Akhnaten. In Europe he has appeared in concert with the Munich Philharmonic in concert performances of Porgy & Bess, conducted by Lorin Maazel and in the title-role Porgy & Bess for New York Harlem Productions’ European tour.
Guadalupe Paz — Mercedes
San Diego Opera debut. Notable appearances for mezzo-soprano Guadalupe Paz include Melibea in Il Viaggio a Reims and Hansel in Hansel and Gretel with Bellas Artes National Opera, Rosina in The Barber of Seville and Angelina in Cinderella with Teatro del Bicentenario and Bellas Artes National Opera, Isolier in Le Comte Ory with the Philharmonic Orchestra of Jalisco, and Maddalena in Il Viaggio a Reims at the Rossini Opera Festival. Her concert repertory includes Glagolitic Mass at the International Cervantino Festival, Ode to Common Things with La Jolla Symphony and Chorus, Tres Canciones para Orquestra y Mezzosoprano at International Festival Instrumenta, and Seven Deadly Sins at the Aspen Music Festival.
Tasha Koontz — Frasquita
American soprano Tasha Koontz made her Company debut as Annina in 2017’s La traviata. Recent appearances include Mimì in La bohème and Violetta in La traviata with Opera on the Avalon in St. John's, Newfoundland. Other highlights include Alice Ford in Falstaff at IU Opera Theater, Donna Anna in Don Giovanni at Bay View Music Festival, and The Countess in The Marriage of Figaro at Northwestern University. She was recently awarded 2nd Place in the Voice Division of the Music Merit Awards in San Diego, CA and 1st Place in the Coeur d'Alene Symphony Young Artist Competition.
Felipe Prado — Remendado
San Diego Opera debut. Notable appearances by tenor Felipe Prado include Spoletta in Tosca with Guild Opera, Borsa in Rigoletto and Gastone and Giuseppe in La traviata with Antelope Valley Symphony Orchestra and Master Chorale, Tamino in The Magic Flute with Ridgecrest Opera Guild, and Alfredo in La traviata with Pacific Lyric Association. He has been a featured soloist for the concert Opera Highlights with the California Philharmonic Orchestra. As an active member of multiple professional ensembles such as the California Philharmonic Orchestra and Chorale he has had the great honor to perform in great venues such as the Walt Disney Concert Hall, the Warner Grand Theater, The Santa Anita Race Track, and the UCLA’s Royce Hall. In 2010 he joined the AVC Concert Choir and Master Chorale and took part in many concerts in a wide range of repertoire. In 2013 he started collaborating with several groups in Los Angeles area, such as the Pacific Palisades Symphony, Los Angeles Lawyers Philharmonic and Legal Voices among others. He also became part of the California Philharmonic Chorale as a chorister under the baton of Victor Vener and vocal direction of Marya Basaraba, and the Golden State Pops Orchestra.
Yves Abel — Conductor
Franco-Canadian conductor Yves Abel made his Company debut in 2013 leading the orchestra for The Daughter of the Regiment and returned in 2014 for Pagliacci and 2016 for Madama Butterfly . A frequent guest with the world’s greatest orchestras and opera companies, Yves Abel is, since January 2015, Chief Conductor of the Nordwestdeutsche Philharmonie (NWD) of Herford. From 2005 to 2011 he has been Principal Guest Conductor of Deutsche Oper, Berlin. He is regularly invited by such theaters as Metropolitan Opera New York, ROH London, Wiener Staatsoper, Teatro alla Scala Milan, Opéra National de Paris, Bayerische Staatsoper Munich. Founder and Music Director of “L'Opéra Francais de New York” devoted to rare French operas, in 2009 he was awarded the title of Chevalier de l’Ordre des Arts et des Lettres by the French Government. His most recent successes include Il Barbiere di Siviglia at Rossini Opera Festival in Pesaro, La traviata in Rome, Carmen in Philadelphia and Hong Kong. His next engagements are Les pêcheurs de perles at Liceu de Barcelona, Hamlet at Deutsche Oper Berlin; the season opening of San Francisco Opera with Romeo et Juliette and L’elisir d’amore at Royal Opera Convent Garden.
Kyle Lang — Director
Kyle Lang made his directing debut with 2017’s As One and has been an assistant director for the Company starting with La bohème in 2015 and in that capacity worked on Nixon in China, Don Giovanni, Tosca, and Falstaff. His directing credits include La bohème for Virginia Opera, The Bear for Wexford Festival Opera, Don Quixote and the Duchess for Central City Opera, L’enfant et les sortilège and Gianni Schicchi for Simpson College, Dead Man Walking for Opera Fayetteville, Apprentice Showcase for Santa Fe Opera, The Face on the Barroom Floor for Tulsa Opera, and Short Works for Central City Opera. His choreographic credits include Vanessa for Wexford Festival Opera, The Merry Widow for Boston Lyric Opera and Utah Opera, La traviata for Fort Worth Opera, Des Moines Opera, and Lyric Opera of Baltimore, Jenůfa for Des Moines Metro Opera, The Last Savage for Indiana University, Sweeney Todd for Virginia Opera, Ariadne auf Naxos for Virginia Opera, Carmen for Opera Omaha, Falstaff and The Marriage of Figaro for Virginia Opera, and Die Fledermaus for Opera Memphis. He is privileged to have danced as a soloist and in the corps de ballet with ZviDance, the Metropolitan Opera, the Lyric Opera of Chicago, Washington National Opera, Santa Fe Opera, and with Christopher K. Morgan, performing in countries across Europe, South America, and the Middle East.