Category Archives: Artistic Director

Jonathan’s Viennese Auditions

by Jonathan Pell

It is 6:00 in the morning and I am in the Vienna Airport waiting for my flight back to Dallas. I came over for three intense days of auditions held at the historic Theater an der Wien, where a panel of my colleagues and I heard almost 100 singers from 34 countries. There were representatives […]

From the Desk of Artistic Director Jonathan Pell, California Part II

by Jonathan Pell

Yesterday afternoon I heard all the singers in the Los Angeles Opera’s young artist program.  Unlike many of the other similar programs around the country, the Los Angles program really draws on singers from around the world rather focusing just on Americans, and this group had representatives from Russia, Korea and Mexico, as well as […]

From the Desk of Artistic Director Jonathan Pell – California – Part 1

by Jonathan Pell

I am in Los Angeles this morning after two days in San Francisco where I attended back to back performances of Boito’s rarely performed opera MEFISTOFELE and the third performance in the world premiere run of Tobias Picker’s new opera DOLORES CLAIBORNE, both starring Patricia Racette. It was an astonishing feat when Ms. Racette agreed […]

From the Desk of Artistic Director Jonathan Pell, Santa Fe – Part VII

by Jonathan Pell

Yesterday afternoon at 4:00 under the auspices of the Santa Fe Concert Association composer Jake Heggie played a recital of some of his songs, accompanying tenor William Burden, soprano Heidi Stober and mezzo-soprano Susanne Mentzer, all of whom are singing with the Santa Fe Opera this summer. The only set of songs that I had […]

From the Desk of Artistic Director Jonathan Pell, Santa Fe – Part VI

by Megan Meister

This posting must be prefaced by confessing that if someone held a gun to my head and demanded to know what my favorite opera was, after much waffling back and forth, I would probably have to confess that it would be Verdi’s LA TRAVIATA.  It was music from this opera that first captivated me as a […]

From the Desk of Artistic Director Jonathan Pell, Santa Fe Part V

by Jonathan Pell

This is the fifth time in forty years that the Santa Fe Opera has mounted a production of Offenbach’s satirical operetta THE GRAND DUCHESS OF GEROLSTEIN, but this time it was done for mezzo-soprano Susan Graham, who looked stunning in the lush period costumes, sang exquisitely (most notably in the beautiful aria “Dites-lui” which is […]

From the Desk of Artistic Director Jonathan Pell, Santa Fe – Part IV

by Jonathan Pell

Although I had heard it in concert several years ago, until last night I had never seen a staged performance of Rossini’s “opera seria” (as opposed to his more celebrated comic operas) LA DONNA DEL LAGO, based on Sir Walter Scott’s THE LADY OF THE LAKE. To be perfectly honest, I have never been much […]

From the Desk of Artistic Director Jonathan Pell, Santa Fe Part III

by Jonathan Pell

I am often asked to judge the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions around the country and several years ago I found myself in New Orleans where we were to select someone to go to New York to compete in the semi-finals.  The crop of singers that year wasn’t particularly good and at one point I […]

From the Desk of Artistic Director Jonathan Pell, Santa Fe Part II

by Jonathan Pell

I  spent most of the morning yesterday with Emmanuel Villaume, Dallas Opera’s new music director (who is in Santa Fe this summer conducting Offenbach’s LA GRANDE DUCHESSE) and general director Keith Cerny (who was back in Dallas but with whom we were meeting via a telephone conference call) discussing plans for the future.  Keith was […]

From the Desk of Artistic Director Jonathan Pell – Santa Fe Part I

by Jonathan Pell

Last night was the first of two separate programs on successive Sunday evening’s that showcase the young artists who participate every summer in the Santa Fe Opera’s renowned apprentice program.  These talented young singers are recruited from around the country (this summer there are more than forty of them) and they appear throughout the season […]