The Elixir of Love, March 2008, David Bazemore Photo
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400000000000000627809_s4Opera Book Club: “Falstaff, a Novel” by Robert Nye

Monday, March 3, 6:00 PM, Granada Books, 1224 State Street

Join us as we continue our book club series with celebrated novelist and poet, Robert Nye as the voice of the now 81-year-old Sir John Falstaff. In this “tell all” award-winning novel, Falstaff remains the ever boastful lothario of his youth, whose comical prattling recounts moments of grandeur, explicit conquests of women, and intimate details of some of Shakespeare’s famous characters. This novel is not for the faint of heart, as its bawdy details will surely strike a visceral reaction from the reader.

The Book Club will feature a wine and cheese reception followed by a discussion on the book, the author and how the book relates to Shakespeare’s plays and Verdi’s opera.

Books are available for purchase for $17.95 at Granada Books, 1224 State Street or (805) 845-1818.


9 ChristmasLights 2Sunday, December 22, 6:30pm to 8:00 pm

Don your favorite Christmas sweaters and winter finery for this festive tour to see some of Santa Barbara’s best holiday lighting. Tom Stanley, local visual artist and bon vivant, will entertain travelers with his own brand of humor and random trivia as we tour the town. Opera Santa Barbara has reserved the whole trolley for this popular tour so bring your friends and family! Christmas carols, mulled wine, spiced cider, and General Director Steven Sharpe’s decadent holiday cookies and appetizers will complete the affair. You might even see Santa, or at least a reindeer or two!

Cost per person: $75

To purchase tickets, call 805.898.3890


Demystifying Opera

Posted in OSB Press Room, OSBlog, Past Events / Tags: no tag /

Friday, November 15, 7 – 9 pm, MichaelKate Interiors, 132 Santa Barbara Street

What is opera all about?  Do they only sing in Italian?  How am I supposed to know what they are saying? 


On Friday, November 15th, MichaelKate Interiors & Art Gallery, opens its doors to Opera Santa Barbara for a unique evening to shed some light on the opera experience. Opera Santa Barbara invites you to take a seat in the impressive MichaelKate showroom to enjoy an evening of opera in a relaxed atmosphere, right in the heart of the Funk Zone.

A wine reception begins at 7:00 PM, followed by a concert with L.A. Opera Baritone, 
Craig Colclough, and accompanist Kosta Popovich (pictured L to R right above). Following the concert there will be a panel discussion moderated by Charles Donelan of the SB Independent with the singer and a few other knowledgeable guests who will give some accessible insight into the many stigmas of opera. This is your chance to ask any and every opera question you have ever ruminated on.

This event is for everyone, and is one of the many ways Opera Santa Barbara is creating an environment to bridge the gap between newbie and aficionado.

Entry is $20 at the door.
 For questions call or email Kristen Reed: 
(805) 898-3890 or kristen@operasb.org

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jean-stapleton

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.


PasqualeFamilyFlyerOpera Santa Barbara will present a special one-hour performance of Donizetti’s comic opera Don Pasquale, to be performed free for children of all ages and their chaperones on Saturday, April 27 at 5:00 pm.

The production will feature professional singers in full costumes, sets, lighting and piano accompaniment. It will also include a narrator to help translate the story to the children.

In this comic opera, Don Pasquale has willed his fortune to his nephew, Ernesto, on the condition he approves of the young man’s bride. Enter Norina – Ernesto’s smart and sassy fiancée – who unfortunately does not pass muster. Pasquale disinherits poor Ernesto, deciding instead to find himself a young wife and produce an heir of his own. Not one to be deterred lightly, Norina disguises herself as the girl of Pasquale’s dreams and marries the coot; you can be sure wedded bliss is not in store! Gorgeous music abounds in Donizetti’s last comic gem.

OSB Artistic Director Jose Maria Condemi leads a cast featuring members of Opera Santa Barbara’s Studio Artist Program. Tenor Theo Lebow, a recent alumnus of the Seattle Opera Young Artist Program, will sing Ernesto. Soprano Elena Galván sings Norina. Bass-baritone Christopher Remmel, most recently seen in Opera Santa Barbara’s production of Aida, returns as Don Pasquale. Efraín Solís, a recent Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions finalist, sings Doctor Malatesta. Tatiana Vassilieva will accompany, and Maestro Brent Wilson will conduct.

Don Pasquale for Families

Saturday, April 27 at 5:00 pm

The Granada Theatre

1214 State Street, Santa Barbara

Admission is free, offered on a first-come, first-serve basis. Doors open at 4:30 pm.

Groups of 15 or more should call in advance to reserve their seats.

For more information, call 805.898.3890 or visit www.OperaSB.org.