Arturo Chacón-Cruz, Cecilia Violetta Lopez, & Vanessa Vasquez Headline Arizona Opera’s 2020-21 Season

By Francisco Salazar

The Arizona Opera has announced its 2020-21 season featuring the company’s second World Premiere, the Regional Premiere of a New Mariachi Opera, a New Production of a Modern Masterwork and the Return of Two Beloved Classics.

“Arizona Opera continues to deepen its commitment to presenting the most vibrant programming possible on our stages and throughout the community. This spans the most important and beloved traditional works from the canon to new works that will empower us to broaden our reach across the state,” said Joseph Specter, the organization’s President and General Director in a press release.

Here is a look at the season:

McDougall RED Series

Clint Borzoni and John de los Santos’ new work “The Copper Queen” makes its world premiere with Daniela Candillari conducting and Crystal Manich directing. The cast is led by acclaimed soprano Cecilia Violetta Lopez and Chelsea Basler sharing the role of  Julia Lowell, Sarah Coit as Addison Moore,  Terrence Chin-Loy as Theodore Billings, Michael Mayes as Daddy / Mr. Floyd, Rob McGinness as Peter Ackerman. Man #1, and Brian James Myer as Richie “Sugar Dog.”

Performance Dates: Sept. 25-27, 2020 – Phoenix / Oct. 3-4, 2020 – Tuscan

Javier Martinez and Leonard Foglia’s “El Milagro del Recuerdo” makes its regional premiere with James Lowe conducting the work in a production by Foglia. Cecelia Duarte, Daniel Noyola, Vanessa Alonzo, Miguel de Aranda, Héctor Vásquez, Claudia Chapa, and Rafael Moras star.

Performance Dates: Nov. 6-8, 2020 – Phoenix /  Nov. 14-15, 2020 – Tuscan 

Main Stage

Maya Lahyani and Fleur Barron share the title role in Bizet’s masterwork “Carmen.” The production by Stephanie Havey also stars Arturo Chacón-Cruz and Matthew White as Don José, Andrew Manea as Escamillo, Vanessa Vasquez and Caitlin Gotimer sharing the role of Micaela. Christopher Allen conducts.

Performance Dates: Jan. 22-24, 2021 – Phoenix / Jan. 30-31, 2021 – Tucson

André Previn’s “A Streetcar Named Desire” is set to be directed by legendary soprano Patricia Racette with Christopher Allen conducting. The cast is headed by Julie Adams and Marlen Nahhas sharing the role of Blanche DuBois, Caitlin Gotimer and Cheyanne Coss as Stella Kowalski, Thomas Glass and Brandon Morales as Stanley Kowalski, Brandon Russell as Harold Mitchell and Jill Grove as Eunice Hubbell.

Performance Dates: Feb. 26-28, 2021 – Phoenix / March 6-7, 2021 – Tucson

The main stage season ends with Donizetti’s “L’Elisir d’Amore” conducted by José Luis Gomez in his Arizona Opera debut and directed by Peggy Hickey. The cast is led by Sarah Tucker and Cheyanne Coss alternating as Adina, Santiago Ballerini and Terrence Chin-Loy sharing the role of Nemorino, Rob McGinness as Belcore, and Patrick Carfizzi as Dulcamara.

Performance Dates: April 2-4, 2021 – Phoenix / April 10-11, 2021 – Tuscan