The first two performances of the 95th season of the San Francisco Opera (SFO), the opening of Giacomo Puccini’s Turandot, held in conjunction with Opera Ball 2017 at the Imperial Palace, on September 8 and the opening of Richard Strauss’ “Elektra” on September 9, will be followed by the annual free Opera in the Park concert. Specifics for the program for this event have not yet been announced, but it will feature acclaimed artists participating in the 2017 Fall Season performing arias and other operatic favorites. The SFO Orchestra will be conducted by Music Director Nicola Luisotti, and General Director Matthew Shilvock will serve as Master of Ceremonies.
The vocalists will include tenor Brian Jagde and soprano Toni Marie Palmertree, both in the cast of Turandot, mezzo Jill Grove and bass-baritone Alfred Walker from the cast of “Elektra,” and soprano Aurelia Florian, tenor Atalla Ayan, and baritone Artur Ruciński, all of whom will be singing in Giuseppe Verdi’s La Traviata, which will be opening on Saturday, September 23. Four of the current Adler Fellows will also participate, sopranos Sarah Cambridge and Amina Edris and tenors Pene Pati and Kyle van Schoonhoven. Following a time-honored tradition, everyone (including the audience) will be invited to participate in the finale, the brindisi (drinking song) from the first act of La Traviata. (Don’t feel embarrassed is “libiamo” is the only word you know!)
The performance will begin at 1:30 p.m. on Sunday, September 10. The venue will be the shell at the west end of Sharon Meadow in Golden Gate Park. This is easily accessible from the Muni bus stop for the de Young museum. Because the event is free, no tickets are required. Food and beverages will be available for sale, but attendees are welcome to bring their own fixings for a picnic. Those who wish further information are welcome to call 415-864-3330.