Top 5 Operas To See This Weekend – North America (2/1-3)

Sonya Yoncheva, Jake Heggie Among Weekend Highlights

By David Salazar

As February, gets underway, more and more opera companies are opening their doors. This week’s offerings feature numerous modern works, but also have their fair share of classic repertoire.

Here is the list (in alphabetical order by company).

Dead Man Walking – Atlanta Opera

Jake Heggie and Terrence McNally’s famed opera will get a major showcase in Atlanta in a production that is also co-produced with the Israeli Opera. The cast will include Jamie Barton and Michael Mayes with a production by Tomer Zvulun. The first performance is on Saturday at 8 p.m. EDT.

Everest – Calgary Opera

The work by Joby Talbot and Gene Scheer will get a performance on Feb. 2, 2019 in a production directed by Leonard Foglia. The work received strong reviews upon its premiere in 2015 with Fred Cohn of Opera News notingthat the work was “devastatingly poignant.”

Giulio Cesare – Indiana University

On Feb. 1 and 2, the famed University will showcase Handel’s famed opera will be featured in a production directed by Robin Guarino and conducted by Gary Thor Wedow. This opera doesn’t often get productions in the U.S. so this presents a strong opportunity to see one of Handel’s great works live in the flesh.

Iolanta / Bluebeard’s Castle – Metropolitan Opera

The famed double bill will get its third performance of the season on Friday evening. Tchaikovsky’s final opera has become increasingly popular over the years and Bartok’s is an undisputed masterwork. Moreover, both operas feature superstar casts with the former work starring Sonya Yoncheva and Matthew Polenzani while the latter will be a vehicle for Gerald Finley and Angela Denoke.

The Barber of Seville – Orlando Opera

New Amsterdam Opera music director Keith Chambers takes on his first “Barber of Seville,” in a production by Robert Neu. He will lead a cast that includes Sarah Nordin, Gabriel Preisser, and Nathan Stark, among others. There will be performances on Friday and Sunday.