American Opera Series 2016

Saturday's at 12 noon
  • Hosted by Peter van de Graaff

The WFMT Radio Network is proud to make the American Opera Series available to our affiliates. The American Opera Series is designed to complement the Metropolitan Opera Broadcasts, filling in the schedule to complete the year. This year the American Opera Series features great performances by the Lyric Opera of Chicago, LA Opera, San Francisco Opera, Glimmerglass Festival, Opera Philadelphia, and more! (see elsewhere in this document for information on each Opera company). The American Opera Series for 2016 will bring distinction to your station’s schedule, and unmatched enjoyment to your listeners. We hope you’ll join us!

Highlights of the American Opera Series include:
• Join Lyric Opera of Chicago for the premiere broadcast of Peruvian-born composer Jimmy López’ opera Bel Canto (May 21)! Called “one of the most interesting young composers anywhere today” (Andrew Patner, Chicago Sun-Times), López’ timely opera wrestles with terrorism, the tenuous relationships between us, and in true Magical-Realist fashion, the power of music to overcome conflict and adversity.

• LA Opera brings us a fantastic double-bill of Puccini’s Gianni Schicchi and Leoncavallo’s Pagliacci (July 16), starring Eli and Edythe Broad General Director Plácido Domingo on stage in the title role for the first half, and on the podium for the second. You won’t want to miss this exciting performance!

• New to our lineup this year, Opera Philadelphia brings the world premiere of a new work, Yardbird, which delves into the mind, heart, and spirit of the late, great Bebop saxophonist Charlie Parker. Renowned tenor Lawrence Brownlee stars in the leading role, with soprano Angela Brown playing the part of Parker’s mother, and Will Liverman as jazz icon Dizzy Gillespie.

Lyric Opera of Chicago

May 14  -  Marriage of Figaro / Mozart
May 21  -  Bel Canto / J. López
May 28 -  Cinderella / Rossini
June 4   -  Wozzeck / Berg
June 11  -  Merry Widow / Lehár
June 18 -  Nabucco / Verdi
June 25 -  Der Rosenkavalier / Strauss
July 2    -  Romeo & Juliet / Gounod
July 9    -  Rusalka / Dvořák

LA Opera

July 16 -     Gianni Schicchi/Pagliacci / Puccini/Leoncavallo
July 23 -     Norma / Bellini
July 30 -    The Two Foscari / Verdi
August 6 -   Moby-Dick / J. Heggie
August 13 - Falstaff / Verdi

San Francisco Opera

August 20 -  Luisa Miller / Verdi
August 27 -   Lucia di Lammermoor / Donizetti 5
September 3 -  Die Meistersinger / Wagner
September 10 - Magic Flute / Mozart
September 17 -  Barber of Seville / Rossini
September 24 -  Fall of the House of Usher / Debussy, Getty, et al. (reconstruction)
October 1 -   Dialogues of the Carmelites / Poulenc
October 8 -  Carmen / Bizet
October 15 - Don Carlos / Verdi
October 22 - Jenůfa / Janáček

Additional Operas

October 29 - Sweeney Todd / Sondheim / Glimmerglass Opera
November 5 - Thieving Magpie / Rossini / Glimmerglass Opera
November 12 - The Crucible / R. Ward / Glimmerglass Opera
November 19 - Yardbird / D. Schnyder / Opera Philadelphia
November 26 - Fidelio / Beethoven / San Francisco Symphony


Airs Saturday, November 26, at 12 noon. This week we close out the American Opera series from WFMT with a concert performance of Beethoven's Fidelio. Nicholas Phan will be featured Brandon Jovanovich as Florestan and Nina Stemme as Leonore, with Kevin Langan Rocco, Nicholas Phan as Jaquino, Joélle Harvey as Rocco, Alan Held as Don Pizarro, Matthew Newlin as the First Prisoner, Craig Verm as Florestan, and Luca Pisaroni as Don Fernando. The San Francisco Symphony and Chorus will be under Michael Tilson Thomas and Ragnar Bohlin is chorus director.

Dominic M. Mercier / Opera Philadelphia

Airs Saturday, November 19, at 12 noon.  This week from Opera Philadelphia we present Charlie Parker’s Yarbird in a Performance at the historic Appolo Theater.  Lawrence Brownlee will take the lead as Charlie Parker. The role of Addie Parker is played by Angela Brown, Chan Parker is played by Emily Pogorelc, Doris Parker is played by Elena Perroni, Rebecca Parker is played by Chrystal E. Williams, Dizzy Gillespie is played by Will Liverman, and De Koenigswarter is played by Tamara Mumford 

Airs Saturday, November 12, at 12 noon.  This week from the Glimmerglass Opera they present Robert Ward's the Crucible, staring David Pittsinger as Reverend John Hale, Brian Mulligan as John Proctor, Ariana Wehr as Abigail Williams, Jamie Barton as Elizabeth Proctor, Adrian Kramer as Reverend Samuel Parris, Zoie Reams as Tituba, and Gabriella H. Sam as Ann Putnam.

Airs Saturday, November 5, at 12 noon. This week from the Glimmerglass Opera, Gioachino Rossini's The Thieving Magpie is featured staring Rachele Gilmore as Ninetta and Musa Ngqungwana as Gottardo, with Dale Travis as Fernando Villabella, Michele Angelini as Giannetto, Allegra De Vita as Pippo, Brad Raymond as Isacco/Antonio, Leah Hawkins as Lucia, Calvin Griffin as Fabrizio Vingradito, and Meg Gillentine as The Magpie.

Airs Saturday, October 29, at 12 noon. This week from the Glimmerglass Opera, a treat for Halloween as they present Stephen Sondheim's Sweeney Todd, the demon barber of fleet street, staring Greer Grimsley in the title roll along with Luretta Bybee as Mrs. Lovett and Harry Greenleaf as Anthony Hope with Emily Pogorelc in the role of Johanna and Nicholas Nestorak as Tobias Ragg. John DeMain conducts the cast and orchestra as well as the Glimmerglass Festival Young Artist featuring Maren Weinberger, Gabriella H.