FIGARO, FIGARO, FI-GA-RO!
The Barber of Seville
Music by Gioachino Rossini
Libretto by Cesare Sterbini
Premiered February 20, 1816, Teatro Argentina (Rome, Italy)
Opera Colorado kicks off the 2019-20 season with this laugh-out-loud comedy, featuring some of the most memorable tunes in all opera—including Figaro’s famous “Largo al factotum,” Rosina’s “Una voce poco fa,” and more. Packed with punchlines, this rapid-fire prequel to The Marriage of Figaro features the mischievous barber Figaro at his most cunning, in a whimsical Art Deco production.
November 2, 5, 8, 10 | 2019
The Ellie Caulkins Opera House at Denver Performing Arts Complex
Performed in Italian, with English and Spanish subtitles at every seat
Estimated Length: Three hours, including one 20-minute intermission
Sets and costumes from Pacific Opera Victoria
Andrew Stenson’s 2018-19 season begins with his Dallas Opera debut as the Steersman in Der Fliegende Holländer. He also joins the Minnesota Opera as Fadinard in The Italian Straw Hat, as well as Utah Opera as Tamino in Die Zauberflöte. Last season included the tenor’s role and company debut with Wexford Festival Opera as Ernesto in Foroni’s Margherita. He also returned to the Lyric Opera of Chicago as Ferrando in Così fan tutte, sang the title role of Candide with the San Francisco Symphony, and made his company debut with Opera Theatre of St. Louis in the world premiere of the two-act version of An American Soldier, singing the role of Danny Chen. Stenson is the first prize winner in both the 2015 Giulio Gari International Vocal Competition and 2016 Gerda Lissner Foundation Competition, and the recipient of a 2011 Sara Tucker Study Grant.
Opera Colorado debut
Megan Marino is praised by Opera News as “a gifted actress with a strong, appealing voice graced by a rich lower register.” In the 2018-19 season, she makes company debuts with Dallas Opera as Meg Page in Falstaff, Atlanta Opera as Olga in Eugene Onegin, and Opera Idaho as Anita in West Side Story. She returns to the Metropolitan Opera as Laura in Iolanta and the Nursing Sister in Suor Angelica and to Utah Opera as Stephano in Roméo et Juliette. Recent highlights include debuts at the Lyric Opera of Chicago (Der Rosenkavalier) and Opéra national de Paris (Parsifal); her return to Santa Fe Opera; and performances of Il barbiere di Siviglia with Florida Grand Opera, Kentucky Opera, Fort Worth Opera, and Virginia Opera. (Madama Butterfly). Future seasons also include her debut with the Opéra national de Bordeaux and returns to the Opéra national de Paris and Metropolitan Opera.
Born in Pavia, Italy, baritone Bruno Taddia’s recent seasons include his debut as Oreste in Gluck’s Iphigenie en Tauride at the Grand Théâtre de Genève, Parmenione in Rossini’s L’Occasione fa il ladro for his debut at the Théâtre des Champs Elysées, the title role of Mozart’s Don Giovanni at the Piccolo Festival of Trieste, Danilo in Lehàr’s Die lustige Witwe at Teatro Carlo Felice in Genova, Don Alfonso in Mozart’s Così fan tutte at the Théâtre du Capitole in Toulouse and at the Opera di Firenze, Count Almaviva in Le Nozze di Figaro at the Grand Théâtre de Genève, Malatesta in Don Pasquale at Teatro Municipal in Santiago del Chile and at the Opera de Oviedo, Macrobio in Rossini’s La pietra del paragone at the Théâtre du Chatelet in Paris, Ciccillo in the world premiere of Battistelli’s Il medico dei pazzi at the Opera de Nancy, Mahler’s Das Knaben Wunderhorn with the Neue Philharmonie Lausitzer and the title role in De Giosa’s Don Checco at Teatro di San Carlo in Naples, among many other international credits.
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.
In the 2018-19 season, bass Harold Wilson returns to the Metropolitan Opera, singing Bertrand in Iolanta and covering Fasolt in Das Rheingold. He also appears with Opera Southwest as King Heinrich in Lohengrin and returns to Dayton Opera as Sparafucile in Rigoletto. His 2017-2018 season included a company debut with Arizona Opera as Fasolt in Das Rheingold and a return to Dayton Opera as Timur in Turandot and Don Basilio in Il barbiere di Siviglia. The previous season included a return to Opera Colorado, singing Ashby in La fanciulla del West, his role debut of Mustafa in L’italiana in Algieri with Sarasota Opera, Oroe in Semiramide with Baltimore Concert Opera and Opera Delaware, and his company debut with the Caramoor Festival singing Ernesto in Il Pirata.
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.
Israeli director Omer Ben Seadia has quickly established herself as one of the fresh new voices in opera to watch. Upcoming productions include Ariadne auf Naxos at Cincinnati Opera, The Barber of Seville at Opera Colorado, and Utah Opera’s short opera project. Previous productions include: Elektra at the Canadian Opera Company, Amahl and the Night Visitors with The Philadelphia Orchestra, Steal a Pencil for Me (world premiere) at Opera Colorado, Idomeneo at Wolf Trap Opera, Tosca at Houston Grand Opera (revival), Yardbird at Atlanta Opera, Faust at Tulsa Opera, La Bohème, L’italiana in Algeri, and A Streetcar Named Desire at Opera Santa Barbara, Considering Matthew Shepard with Cincinnati Opera, L’elisir d’amore at Naples Opera, Don Pasquale, St. John Passion at Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music, Così fan tutte at the University of Michigan, and Roméo et Juliette at the International Vocal Arts Institute. Ms. Ben Seadia has also taught and directed scenes programs at Santa Fe Opera, Merola Opera Program, and the Aspen Music Festival and School.