Student Rush Tickets – Box Office Only
LVO is pleased to offer a Student Rush Policy to students in middle school through college. Special tickets may be purchased at the Bankhead box office no earlier than 2 hours before a performance, when space is available. Students must purchase in person and student ID is required. Watch our facebook page for details. Bring a friend! Take a chance to make a memory. Nobody ever forgets their first opera.
A Unique Marriage of Figaro
Stage director Brian Luedloff’s creative vision of 1940s Hollywood stars making a film portraying Mozart’s traditional characters of the 1700’s
Figaro will transport you back in time with full costumes and staging of the 1700’s, yet there is more to the story.
“A 1940’s film stage is the context for Mozart’s traditional opera,” explains Luedloff. “The 1700’s scenes will allow us to reveal Figaro in a traditional way with period costumes (those scenes being filmed) and in a more immediate way in the behind-the-scenes elements of the story (the actor playing the Count imposing himself on the actress playing Susanna). And all without losing a bit of the delicious humanity and humor that Mozart, [librettist] daPonte and [playwright] Beaumarchais play intended!”
In addition to the Figaro staging, the set will include the trailers and camera equipment as evocative of a 1946 filming on location. You get two shows in this unique and compelling staging.
Brian Luedloff- Stage Director
Brian Clay Luedloff serves as Artistic Director for Opera Fort Collins where he has directed Tosca, Carmen, Amahl and the Night Visitors, il Barbiere di Siviglia, The Daughter of the Regiment, The Gift of the Magi, Faust, The Ballad of Baby Doe, Turandot, Sondheim’s Follies, Lucia di Lammermoor, Cosi fan tutte and Otello. He was also Director of Opera Theatre and Professor of Music at University of Northern Colorado, and has staged more than fifty productions for professional opera companies and theatres across north America. He has served on the staging staff of Lyric Opera of Chicago, San Francisco Opera, Washington National Opera, the Dallas Opera and Houston Grand Opera, assisting many internationally-renowned directors.
Alex Katsman- Music Director
Alexander is an alumni of the San Francisco Opera’s Merola Program. He received his M.M. from St. Petersburg Rimsky-Korsakov State Conservatory and his B.M. cum laude from Mussorgsky College of Music in St. Petersburg, Russia.Since his arrival in the United States, Alexander has been sought after as a conductor and collaborative pianist. He conducted for Opera San Jose, West Bay Opera, Martinez Opera, Bayshore Lyric Opera, Berkeley West Edge Opera, Oakland Lyric Opera, Solo Opera, San Francisco Lyric Opera, Opera Academy of California, Peninsula Teen Opera, Diablo Light Opera, Town Hall Theater, and also at CalState University East Bay and Diablo Valley College.
Christie Conover as Susanna
Christie Conover is an accomplished soloist who has performed with the Komische Oper Berlin (China tour), the Colorado Symphony Orchestra, the Colorado Music Festival, andthe Billings Symphony. She gave numerous performances of her concept concert entitled Women of the West, representing the National Federation of Music Clubs as a winner of their 2015 Young Artist competition. Locally she has performed the role of Caroline Abbott in the 2015 world premiere of Opera San Jose’s production of Where Angels Fear to Tread.
Kristen Choi as Cherubino
Ms Choi, a California native, was one of three winners in the district Metropolitan Opera National Council auditions in San Diego. She holds a Masters of Music degree from the San Francisco Conservatory. During the 2013-14 season she was an Emerging Artist with Virginia Opera, and she has performed as an Apprentice Artist with the Sarasota Opera. In the bay area Ms. Choi has performed with both Opera Parallèle and West Bay Opera.
Bernardo Bermudez as Count Almaviva
Venezuelan American lyric baritone Bernardo Bermudez started his musical education at The Conservatory of Music Juan Manuel Olivares, in Caracas Venezuela. Operatic roles performed include Figaro in Il barbiere di Siviglia, Stanley Kowalski in A Streetcar Named Desire, Silvio in Pagliacci, Escamillo in Carmen, Valentin in Faust, Belcore in L’elisir d’amore, the title role in Don Giovanni, Papageno in Die Zauberflöte, Count Almaviva in Le nozze di Figaro, Vidal Hernando in Luisa Fernanda, Schaunard in La Boheme, Aeneas in Dido & Aeneas. He participated as a voice fellow in Summer Festivals at The Music Academy of the West, as well as Opera North. Finalist in the Burbank Philharmonic Hennings-Fischer Opera Competition, Opera Buffs Grant recipient, semifinalist in the Loren L. Zachary National Vocal Competition, recipient of the Doug Acker Memorial Vocal Scholarship, and 2nd place winner in the Virginia Hawk Vocal Competition.
Lacy Sauter as Countess Almaviva
Lacy Sauter hails from Scottsdale, Arizona and is delighted to be making her Livermore Valley Opera debut. She has performed with Arizona Opera in Rusalka and in a workshop performance of Borzoni’s The Copper Queen. She has sung with such companies as: Atlanta Opera, Chautauqua Opera, Florida Grand Opera, Utah Festival Opera, Nashville Opera, Union Avenue Opera, The Glimmerglass Festival, The Santa Fe Opera, Heartland Opera Theatre and the Missouri Symphony. She was a two-time Regional Finalist in the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions, 2nd Place Winner in the Orpheus Vocal Competition and 1st Place Winner in Phoenix Opera’s Southwest Vocal Competition.
Efrain Solis as Figaro
Efraín Solís is a recent graduate Adler Fellowship at San Francisco Opera, where he sang Papageno in Die Zauberflöte, Dandini in La cenerentola, and Schaunard in La bohème. In the 2016-17 season, he sings Figaro in Le nozze di Figaro (Opera Memphis) and is presented in recital (El Camino College Center for the Arts). Recent performances for include Mercutio in Roméo et Juliette (Opera Carolina, Virginia Opera, Toledo Opera); Slook in La cambiale di matrimonio (Philharmonia Baroque); Glass’ Hydrogen Jukebox (West Edge Opera), Gaspar in Donizetti’s Rita (New Century Chamber Orchestra); and Britten’s War Requiem (Berkeley Community Chorus). Recital programs include the New York Festival of Song and a Schwabacher Debut Recital. He is an alumnus of the Merola Opera Program San Francisco Opera and holds degrees from San Francisco Conservatory of Music and Chapman University.
Marcellina – Deborah Rosengaus
Basilio – Mason Gates
Bartolo – Carl King
Antonio – Kiril Havezov
Curzio – Jonathan Orenberg
Barbarina – Alba Franco-Cancel
Notes On The Figaro Production By Stage Director Brian Luedloff
Mozart’s Le Nozze di Figaro is not so much a comedy as it is a farce: farce seems silly and ridiculous, but reveals something about human nature through satire and absurdity that mere comedy cannot.
Surely DaPonte appreciated that when he was setting Pierre Augustin Beaumarchais’ popular play, which skewers class distinctions and exposes the moral hypocrisy of the aristocracy. I’ve chosen to set Figaro in the late 1940s in Hollywood on the soundstage of a film set, where a Cecile B. DeMille type is filming The Marriage of Figaro. I wanted to give our Figaro a modern, if not contemporary, setting that would allow people to see more of themselves and those they know in the story.
It’s so easy to assume that the droit du seigneur is fictional or a thing of the past: that people in power and privilege don’t use that power in selfish and intimidating ways. Viewed through a 21st-century lens, the Count is a serial sexual predator; but set in the 1940s I hope that it will be less political and more personal.
Film stars of the golden age of Hollywood are the closest thing we have to royalty and aristocracy; a film stage setting will allow us to reveal some of the scenes in a traditional way with period costumes (those scenes being filmed) and in a more immediate way in the behind-the-scenes elements of the story (the actor playing the Count imposing himself on the actress playing Susanna. And all without losing a bit of the delicious humanity and humor that Mozart, daPonte and Beaumarchais intended!
Mozart’s Marriage Of Figaro Is A Classic Tale For The Ages
The Marriage of Figaro is a timeless comedy with its bubbling overture and brilliant arias composed by Mozart at the height of his genius – the result is a witty yet profound tale of love, betrayal, and forgiveness. It tells how the servants, Figaro and Susanna, cleverly outwit their master, Count Almaviva, from seducing Susanna. Through their manipulations, the Count’s love for his Countess is restored. Adding to the fun is an old man seeking revenge, a scheming maid, a drunken gardener, and an amorous teenager. Much happens on a single, crazy day!