A High-Stakes Thriller
Music by Giacomo Puccini
Libretto by Luigi Illica and Giuseppe Giacosa
Premiered January 14, 1900, Teatro Costanzi (Rome, Italy)
The 2021-22 Season opens with Puccini’s heart-racing drama overflowing with power struggles and vengeance. A corrupt chief of police has a cruel ultimatum for Rome’s most celebrated prima donna, Tosca: submit to his lustful desires, or trigger the execution of her beloved. Who will survive this web of betrayal and revenge?
November 6, 9, 12, 14 | 2021
The Ellie Caulkins Opera House at Denver Performing Arts Complex
Performed in Italian, with English and Spanish subtitles at every seat
Estimated Length: Two hours, forty five minutes, including two 20-minute intermissions
*Join us one hour prior to each performance at the Ellie Caulkins Opera House of a free and insightful pre-performance discussion led by opera historian Betsy Schwarm.
Sets and costumes provided by Seattle Opera.
Soprano Melissa Citro’s most recent engagements include the role of Minnie in La Fanciulla del West both with Michigan Opera Theatre and Opera Colorado, Marina in Dvořák’s rarely heard Dmitrij at the Bard Festival, and Gutrune in San Francisco Opera’s production of Wagner’s Ring Cycle, while covering Brunnhilde in Siegfried and Sieglinde in Die Walküre. This season she returns to the Metropolitan Opera for Die Walküre, and debuts the role of Tosca.
Prior to that, she made her Washington Opera debut as Gutrune in their new production of Götterdämmerung, her return to New Orleans Opera as Rosilinde in Die Fledermaus, and her debut with the Detroit Symphony Orchestra in Mahler’s 2nd Symphony. Prior to that she made her debut with the San Francisco Opera as Freia in Das Rheingold, and Gutrune in Götterdämmerung, and her role debut as Sieglinde in Wagner’s Die Walküre with the Virginia Opera, Senta in Der Fliegende Hollander (cover) with San Francisco Opera, and her return to the Metropolitan Opera where she covered Renée Fleming in the title role in Dvořák’s Rusalka. Prior to that she joined the San Francisco Opera and the Metropolitan Opera casts of The Makropulous Case, where she covered Karita Mattila as Emilia.
Tenor Rafael Davila has quickly risen to be one of the most sought after tenors of his generation. With almost 60 roles already under his belt, he made his Metropolitan Opera debut in 2017 as Don José in Carmen. Other recent engagements include Des Grieux in Puccini’s Manon Lescaut under Maestro Plácido Domingo’s baton in Valencia, Dick Johnson in La Fanciulla del West and Don José in Carmen for Minnesota Opera, Cavaradossi in Leipzig, a return to Washington National Opera in the title role of Verdi’s Don Carlo and Don José in Carmen, his debut with Chicago Lyric Opera as General Alfredo in the world premiere of the opera Bel Canto, his return to Valencia for Aida, his debut with the Macerata Festival as Turiddu in Cavalleria Rusticana, and his return to Lyric Opera of Kansas City as Don Jose in Carmen.
Opera Colorado debut
Mexican baritone Luis Ledesma has established a reputation as a “rich and well controlled baritone” (Opera News). He frequently portrays the heroes and villains of Puccini, Verdi, and the bel canto masters as well as roles in recent new works in Spanish including Florencia en el Amazonas and El pasado nunca se termina. His operatic and concert career has advanced in Europe, the United States, and South America and includes theaters such as Teatro alla Scala, the Liceu in Barcelona, Klangbogen Festival in Vienna, Wexford Festival, Teatro Municipal de Santiago, Semperoper in Dresden, Koeln Oper, Teatro Colon in Buenos Aires, Bellas Artes in Mexico City and many more. This season, Ledesma will perform the title role in Macbeth with Syracuse Opera, Sharpless in Madama Butterfly with Pacific Symphony, Augustino in El pasado nunca se termina with Fort Worth Opera, and perform as a soloist in Carmina Burana with Acadiana Symphony.
Opera Colorado debut
Stefano de Peppo is one of opera’s busiest singing actors sought for Italian character bass parts. Notable roles include the title role in Don Pasquale, Dulcamara in L’Elisir d’Amore, Magnifico in La Cenerentola, Mustafa in L’Italiana in Algeri, Bartolo in Il Barbiere di Siviglia, Leporello in Don Giovanni, the title role in Le Nozze di Figaro, and Alphonso in Così fan tutte. Theaters in which he has appeared include the Finnish National Opera, Estates Theater in Prague, Teatro Argentina, Jerez de la Frontiera, Gran Teatro de Cordoba, and Tenerife, Teatro Colon, Teatro Bellas Artes, Teatro Aquascalientes, Monterrey, Mexico, National Theater of Costa Rica, New Israeli Opera, Royal Albert Hall (London), Opera Hamilton, Los Angeles Opera, Austin Lyric Opera, The Atlanta Opera, Arizona Opera, Opera Santa Barbara, Lyric Opera of Kansas City, Opera Memphis, Minnesota Opera, Opera New Jersey, Palm Beach Opera, San Diego Opera, Sarasota Opera, Opera Tampa, and Washington National Opera. A native Italian, Mr. de Peppo began his musical career as a member of the Children’s Chorus of Teatro alla Scala of Milan for seven years, after which he undertook vocal studies at Civic School of Music in Milan.
Appointed in 2015 as Opera Colorado’s first-ever music director, Ari Pelto’s “breathtaking wizardry in the pit” (The Denver Post) has been widely celebrated, with Pelto in demand at opera houses and concert halls throughout the United States. At the age of 24, Pelto was appointed Assistant Conductor at the Spoleto Festival and he has since gone on to conduct worldwide. International engagements include performances with Bochumer Philharmoniker and opera productions at New National Theatre of Tokyo and the Teatro Nacional Sucre in Quito, Ecuador. In 2004 he made his highly-praised debut with New York City Opera, conducting La Traviata, after which he became a regular, returning for productions of Madama Butterfly, La Bohème, and Carmen. Recent successes include Eugene Onegin at Lyric Opera of Kansas City, Lucia di Lammermoor at Virginia Opera, and La Voix Humaine at Chicago Opera Theater. Here in Denver, he has led many acclaimed performances, including this season’s La Traviata. Opera Colorado is pleased to announce an extension of Pelto’s contract through the 2023-24 season.
In the 2018–19 season Louisa Muller makes directing debuts at Garsington Opera, LA Opera, and Minnesota Opera. In recent seasons she has directed at the Metropolitan Opera, Lyric Opera of Chicago, Houston Grand Opera, Grand Théâtre de Genève, Opera Queensland, and Atlanta Opera. She received considerable critical acclaim for her 2017 staging of Das Rheingold with the New York Philharmonic, which the New York Times called “riveting…a remarkable evening of music theater” and named one of the Best Classical Music Performances of the year. For Wolf Trap Opera she has directed new productions of Corigliano’s The Ghosts of Versailles, The Rape of Lucretia, Tosca, and Roméo et Juliette. Muller is in her eleventh season on the directing staff of the Metropolitan Opera, where she has helmed revivals of Don Giovanni, Cavalleria Rusticana/Pagliacci, and L’elisir d’amore. She is on the faculty of the Scuola di Belcanto in Urbania, Italy.
Opera Colorado debut
The Ellie Caulkins Opera House
- 14 2021