J’Nai Bridges, Gordon Hawkins & Deborah Voigt Lead Boston Lyric Opera’s 2021-22 Season

By Francisco Salazar

The Boston Lyric Opera has announced its 2021-22 Season marking a return to live, on-stage opera, and continuation of the company’s on-screen programming throughout the year.


The season will open with Mascagni’s Cavalleria Rusticana starring Mezzo-soprano J’Nai Bridges in her BLO and role debut as Santuzza. The production will also star Alfred Walker and Sarna Lapine will direct. BLO Music Director David Angus will conduct.

Performance Dates: Oct. 1-10, 2021 

Terence Blanchard’s “Champion: An Opera in Jazz,” with a libretto by Pulitzer Prize and Tony Award-winning playwright Michael Cristofer will get a new production starring Gordon Hawkins as Emile, Chris Kenney as Young Emile, Tichina Vaughn as Griffith’s mother Emelda, and Ariana Wehr as Cousin Blanche and Sadie Griffith. Kwamé Ryan conducts the score.

Performance Dates: May 18-22, 2022

Ana Sokolović’s “Svadba” makes its world premiere on BLO’s operabox.tv streaming service in early 2022. Shura Baryshnikov will direct the film.


The company’s “The Fall of the House of Usher” and “Desert In” will remain available to subscribers, and on-demand, into the new season.

The new season will also feature the premiere of the historic 1991 production of “Ariadne auf Naxos” that starred and launched the career of American soprano Deborah Voigt. Additional content with Voigt will be available later on operabox.tv, and future 30th-anniversary events are planned for this fall.