Opera Santa Barbara is starting an opera book club. The club will meet every 6-8 weeks in the new “lounge” at our downtown offices. Each meeting will include wine and cheese, to discuss a book which coordinates with one of the operas in our season or an operatic theme. The first book will be “Butterfly’s Child” a new novel by Angela Davis-Garner.
The novel follows the life of Benji (Trouble) after he is plucked from the security of his home in Nagasaki to live with his American father, Lt. Pinkerton, and stepmother, Kate, on their farm in Illinois. The family conceals his true identity as a child born from a liaison between his father and a geisha—and tells everyone that he is an orphan. When the truth surfaces, it will splinter this family’s fragile dynamic and send Benji on the journey of a lifetime ending up in Nagasaki, where he will uncover the truth about his mother’s tragic death.
The book is available at Chaucer’s Bookstore or at the Kindle Store.
The first meeting of the Opera Book Club will be Tuesday, October 9 at 5:30 pm, and future meetings will be decided at the first meeting. Please RSVP if you will join the group by calling 805.898.3890.
Would you like to be a Geisha this year for Halloween? Or how about Carmen and Don José the Toreador? Opera Santa Barbara is cleaning out our costume storage facility, and just in time for Halloween we will host a special Costume Sale on Saturday, October 20 from 11 am – 5 pm!
The sale will take place in the parking lot of our offices at 1330 State Street, and will feature hundreds of costume pieces we have collected over the past 18 years. The sale will also include some wigs, props (think Japanese umbrellas) and other items to create the perfect Halloween costume.
For more information, or to help volunteer for the sale, call Sara at 805.898.3890.
We continue our popular Opera on the GO! series on October 24th at 5:30pm when we give you an intriguing look into the lifestyle of a Japanese geisha, when special guests Takako Wakita and Heather Sterling will transform model Kaita Lepore from girl to geisha in front of your eyes – complete with wig and makeup application, followed by a kimono show (featuring some special guests)!
[Pictured from L-R: Takako Wakita, Kaita Lepore]
Suggested Donation (accepted at the door):
$12 (OSB Subscribers)
$5 (Students with ID)
This season’s Opera on the GO! presentations will be held at the Santa Barbara Library’s Faulkner Gallery: 40 East Anapamu Street, SB CA 93101
Opera Santa Barbara’s Artistic Director Jose Maria Condemi chats with soprano Mihoko Kinoshita, who takes on the title role of ‘Madame Butterfly’ this November.
JMC: As a Japanese-born singer, how do you approach performing one of the Italian repertoire’s key roles, based on a character so close to your own culture?
MK: I think my interpretation of the character is changing; she’s not solely a Japanese character now. My first Cio-Cio-San was at the Santa Margherita Opera Festival in Italy; I created the character to be gentle and quiet – more traditionally Japanese. Then I lived in Italy for more than five years. After a few productions, I really started thinking about the text, which is so important to Italian opera – especially in Puccini’s work! I’m always thinking about the words; this is Italian music with Italian words. I’ve come to consider ‘Butterfly’ an Italian opera first, and a Japanese story second. Read on…
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Opera Santa Barbara’s Artistic Director Jose Maria Condemi is hosting a fabulous trip to San Francisco from Nov. 30 – Dec. 2 to see Tosca starring Angela Gheorghiu (pictured at left), directed by Mr. Condemi. The trip will include three nights at the spectacular Renaissance Stanford Court Hotel on Nob Hill, a private backstage tour of the San Francisco Opera with Jose Maria Condemi, and several other activities. Following is the full itinerary:
Friday, November 30
Arrival to hotel at your leisure
6:00 pm: Dinner at Firenze by Night in North Beach
8:00 pm: Beach Blanket Babylon
Saturday, December 1
Breakfast at the Hotel
9:30 am: Private docent tour of the French Modernist exhibit at the de Young Museum
Afternoon at your leisure
6:00 pm: Dinner at Jardiniere
8:00 pm: Tosca at the SF Opera with private backstage tour
Sunday, December 2
Breakfast at the Hotel
10:00 am: Guided Walking Tour of Chinatown and Dim Sum Lunch
Afternoon/evening at your leisure
Monday, December 3
Breakfast at the Hotel
Departure at your leisure
The cost per person, double occupancy is $1,195, with a single supplement of $295. Each ticket includes a $250 tax-deductible donation to Opera SB. This trip is limited to 24 people.
If you are interested in attending, please contact Opera Santa Barbara ASAP at 805.898.3890.