Everything You Need to Know About Opera Philadelphia’s 2017-18 Season

By David Salazar

With February drawing to a close, Opera Philadelphia announced its 2017-18 season.

The company is slated to open the new season with a 12-day festival that will showcase opera across six venues for a total of 25 performances. This festival, called O17, will take place between Sept. 14-25.

The festival opens with the world premiere of Kevin Puts’ “Elizabeth Cree” on Sept. 14. Based on the novel “The Trial of Elizabeth Cree” by Ackroyd, the opera is set in 1880s and follows several storylines including serial killings and a domestic murder. Puts and librettist Mark Campbell are the force behind the famed “Silent Night.” The opera will also be performed on Sept. 16, 19, 21 and 23 at the Perelman Theater.

Sept. 15 features the premiere of the Komische Oper Berlin’s production of Mozart’s “The Magic Flute.” The work will be performed in German at the Academy of Music in a cast that includes Ben Bliss, Rachel Sterrenberg, Jarrett Ott and Olga Pudova. This production is an exclusive East Coast appearance. The run features shows on the 17th, 20th, 22nd and 24th of September.

There will also be the world premiere of Daniel Bernard Roumain’s “We Shall Not Be Moved” on Sept. 16 at the Wilma Theater. The work, which will be performed on the 17th, 18th, 21st, 23rd and 24th of the month, speaks to modern times with racial divide at the core of the opera’s themes. Marian Anderson Vocal Award Winner John Holiday leads the cast.

Also on Sept. 16 is a double bill featuring Monteverdi’s “Il combattimento di Tancredi e Clorinda” at the Philadelphia Museum of Art. The second work on the program is Lembit Beecher’s “I Have No Stories to Tell You,” in its Philadelphia Premiere.

September 18 marks yet another world premiere in the form of David Hertzberg’s “The Wake World,” which will be staged The Barnes Foundation. The opera is based a story of the same name by Aleister Crowley.

Also featured at the festival will be a recital by famed soprano Sondra Radvanovsky on Sunday Sept. 17. She will also give a masterclass the following day. Her performance will take place at the Perelman Theater.

In the spring of 2018, the company will feature George Benjamin’s now iconic “Written on Skin,” starting on Feb. 9 and running through the 18th at the Academy of Music. Notable cast members include Anthony Roth Costanzo, Mark Stone and Lauren Snouffer.

“Carmen” also returns to Philadelphia on April 27 for a five-performance run that includes dates on the 29th, May 2nd, 4th and 6th. Daniela Mack portrays the famed gypsy while Evan LeRoy Johnson, Zachary Nelson and Kirsten MacKinnon round out the cast.