To launch its 20th Anniversary Season, Opera Santa Barbara is presenting a special performance of Lee Hoiby’s comic one-act opera Bon Appétit! on Monday, September 30 at noon at the Center Stage Theatre. This delicious opera is a comedic take on a classic episode of Child’s popular television show – set to music! The incomparable mezzo-soprano Susan Nicely stars as the flamboyant master chef, teaching the makings of a classic French chocolate cake – Le Gâteau au Chocolat L’Éminence Brune. This performance is under one hour long, designed to fit into any lunch break. And, after the performance, audiences will enjoy a slice of chocolate cake courtesy of Whole Foods.
With his short opera Bon Appétit!, American composer Lee Hoiby (1926-2011) took on the making of a chocolate cake, as told through the actual words of celebrity chef Julia Child, who spent the later part of her life living at Casa Dorinda in Santa Barbara. Hoiby composed Bon Appétit! In 1985 for American actress and friend Jean Stapleton (best knows as Edith Bunker in All in the Family – pictured above), who sang the 1989 premiere at the Kennedy Center and later performed it in an off-Broadway run. The libretto for Bon Appétit! Was adapted by Hoiby’s frequent collaborator and partner Mark Shulgasser from transcripts of two episodes of Child’s TV show, The French Chef. The overwhelming popularity of Child (1912-2004) came not just from her culinary expertise but from her self-deprecating humor and matter-of-fact style. Hoiby wisely left most of the gags for the staging and wrote a tuneful but straight-ahead vocal line. Like Child’s whipped egg whites, Bon Appétit! may be light and frothy, but it’s the result of a master’s sure touch.
Bon Appétit!. Monday, September 30, 2013, 12:00 pm at the Center Stage Theater, upstairs at Paseo Nuevo
Tickets are $13 per person and can be purchased by calling the Center Stage Theater at 805.963.0408 or www.centerstagetheater.org.
The start of our opera seasons means the return of our popular Noontime Concerts. These concerts are offered FREE to the public, and feature the talented members of our Studio Artists Program. Concerts feature a diverse repertoire of popular and lesser-known operatic offerings, all accompanied by piano.
All concerts will be held on Thursdays in the Faulkner Gallery at the Santa Barbara Public Library.
FALL 2013 DATES: October 17, 24 and 31
LOCATION: The Faulkner Gallery of the Santa Barbara Public Library, 40 E. Anapamu Street, Santa Barbara
START TIME: 12:00 Noon
Monday, October 28, 7:00 PM, Granada Books, 1224 State Street
Opera Santa Barbara is bringing back the book club this season with Paola Capriolo’s Floria Tosca. Based on Sardou’s play La Tosca (which inspired our beloved Puccini) this crafty tale reads as an inside look at Scarpia’s diary. In it he divulges his most holy, diabolical, and lascivious thoughts surrounding Floria Tosca, and her lover Mario Cavaradossi. Paolo Capriolo’s prose takes us deep inside the tortured mind of the character Puccini has taught us to loathe; painting the scene with sexual desire posed against a pious devotion. Will we continue to abhor this complicated man, or will we uncover a newfound empathy? Contact Kristen Reed to RSVP at 805.898.3890 to order your copy ($12.99). Your book will be available for pick up at Granada Books.
To launch our 20th Anniversary Season this year, Opera Santa Barbara is going “all out” on the opening night of Tosca at the Granada Theatre with a Gala event not to miss! Guests will enjoy valet parking as they walk the red carpet in black tie while being seranaded by an Italian accordian player. Upstairs in the Founders Room, guests will enjoy a Roman-inspired three-course pre-opera dinner catered by Rincon Catering with wines by Palmina. Guests will enjoy a private intermission reception as well as a Champagne and dessert party following the performance with members of the cast and production team.
Tickets for the Gala are $250 per person if you already have a ticket to the opera or $375 which includes a Section A ticket.
Purchase your tickets before they sell out! Call Malena at 805.898.3890.