James Conlon conducts a new-to-Los Angeles production by David McVicar
(Los Angeles) February 23, 2023 — LA Opera continues its 2022/23 season with Claude Debussy's enigmatic masterpiece Pelléas et Mélisande, conducted by Music Director James Conlon. The production, which originated at Scottish Opera, was created by the internationally acclaimed director David McVicar. Performances will take place from March 25 through April 16, 2023, at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion.
"I am enormously pleased that Pelléas et Mélisande, one of the most rapturously beautiful operas in the entire repertory, is returning to LA Opera for the first time since 1995," said Christopher Koelsch, LA Opera's president and CEO. "Pelléas is one of my, and James Conlon's, favorite operas, and for several years now, we've been planning to offer its enchantments to audiences. I can't wait to hear Debussy's beguiling score come to life in the hands of our extraordinary orchestra under his baton. And we welcome a world-class cast, with Will Liverman and Sydney Mancasola both making their eagerly anticipated house debuts in the title roles, and Kyle Ketelsen making an overdue return as Golaud. We are fortunate indeed to experience the legendary musicianship of Ferruccio Furlanetto and Susan Graham in pivotal roles. The production by Sir David McVicar perfectly embodies Maeterlinck and Debussy's deeply sensual masterpiece."
About the Opera
Lost in the forest, a prince encounters an ethereal beauty with a mysterious past. But after she's brought home to his family as his bride, she begins to grow increasingly close to his handsome younger brother. Debussy's sensual, exquisitely nuanced score casts a hypnotic spell, capturing an enigmatic dream world where forbidden love blossoms. Based on a play of the same name by Maurice Maeterlinck, the opera premiered in Paris in 1902.
The cast is led by baritone Will Liverman and soprano Sydney Mancasola as the titular lovers, both of them making their company debuts. Will Liverman came to international attention for his breakout 2021 Metropolitan Opera appearance as Charles, the leading role of Terence Blanchard's Fire Shut Up in My Bones. Notable recent appearances include Leonard Bernstein's Mass for the 50th anniversary of the Kennedy Center and the world premiere of his own opera, The Factotum, which he starred in and composed with DJ/recording artist K. Rico, at the Lyric Opera of Chicago earlier this month.
Sydney Mancasola comes to Los Angeles after appearances as Pamina in The Magic Flute at the Metropolitan Opera. Other performances for the season include Adina in L'Elisir d'Amore at Opéra National de Paris, Eurydice in Offenbach’s Orpheus in the Underworld at the Komische Oper Berlin, and Titania in Britten’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream with Des Moines Metro Opera. Other recent appearances include Musetta in La Bohème at English National Opera, Susanna in The Marriage of Figaro at the Frankfurt Opera, and the title role of Manon at the Cologne Opera.
Bass-baritone Kyle Ketelsen sings the role of Golaud, his first LA Opera appearance since his 2007 debut as Leporello in Don Giovanni. One of the great basses of our time, Ferruccio Furlanetto, returning as King Arkel, previously appeared with the company as King Philip II in Don Carlo in both 2006 and 2018. One of today's foremost exponents of French vocal music, mezzo-soprano Susan Graham, the artistic advisor for the company's Domingo-Colburn-Stein Young Artist Program, makes her role debut as Geneviève. The role of Yniold will be performed by treble Kai Edgar, who recently made his Metropolitan Opera debut in The Hours by Kevin Puts; he will reprise the role of Yniold this summer with Santa Fe Opera.
The Creative Team
James Conlon conducts a production created by director David McVicar for Scottish Opera in 2017. Leah Hausman will serve as revival director and movement director. The sets and costumes are designed by Rae Smith, with lighting designed by Pablo Santiago and projections designed by Jack Henry James Fox. Jeremy Frank is the chorus director.
Click here to download production photos and artist headshots.
Performance Dates, Times and Address
There will be six performances of Pelléas et Mélisande at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion, located at 135 North Grand Avenue, Los Angeles, CA 90012:
Saturday, March 25, 2023, at 7:30pm
Sunday, April 2, 2023, at 2pm
Wednesday, April 5, 2023, at 7:30pm
Saturday, April 8, 2023, at 7:30pm
Thursday, April 13, 2023, at 7:30pm
Sunday, April 16, 2023, at 2pm
Tickets for Pelléas et Mélisande begin at $15 and are on sale now. Tickets can be purchased online at LAOpera.org, by phone at 213.972.8001, or in person at the LA Opera box office at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion (135 N. Grand Avenue, Los Angeles CA 90012). For disability access, call 213.972.0777 or email LAOpera@LAOpera.org.
Masks are no longer required indoors at the theater, although the wearing of masks is encouraged.
More information is available at LAOpera.org/Pelleas.
About LA Opera
Los Angeles is a city of enormous diversity and creativity, and LA Opera is dedicated to reflecting that vibrancy by redefining what opera can be. Through imaginative new productions, world premiere commissions, and inventive performances that preserve foundational works while making them feel fresh and compelling, LA Opera has become one of America’s most exciting and ambitious opera companies.
In addition to its mainstage performances at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion, the company explores unusual repertoire each season through the LA Opera Off Grand initiative, featuring performances in a variety of venues throughout Los Angeles. The LA Opera Connects initiative offers a robust variety of educational programming and community engagement offerings that reaches people throughout every corner of Los Angeles County. The company also offers a multitude of online content via its LA Opera On Now digital offerings, which launched in 2020. Learn more at LAOpera.org.
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Production made possible by generous support from
Dunard Fund USA
GRoW @ Annenberg
With special appreciation to
Gregory and Régina Annenberg Weingarten
LA Opera Orchestra generously underwritten by
Terri and Jerry Kohl
LA Opera’s 2022/23 season is generously underwritten by
GRoW @ Annenberg
LA Opera is a nonprofit organization dedicated to serving the greater Los Angeles community.