The Dallas Opera has Achieved a Balanced Operating Result, Two Years Ahead of Schedule!

by Megan Meister

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
Thursday, September 19, 2013
Contact: Suzanne Calvin 214.443.1014                     Or Megan Meister 214.443.1071
suzanne.calvin@dallasopera.org                                 megan.meister@dallasopera.org                                           

THE DALLAS OPERA IS PROUD TO ANNOUNCE

THE COMPANY HAS ACHIEVED A BALANCED OPERATING RESULT,
TWO YEARS AHEAD OF SCHEDULE!

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TDO Achieves First Balanced Operating Budget Since 2005

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Company to Present Four Operas
During 2014-15 Season, in Addition to Everest,
A Dallas Opera World Premiere

            DALLAS, TX, SEPTEMBER 19, 2013 – The Dallas Opera is extremely proud to announce today that the company has achieved its first balanced operating budget since Fiscal 2005, a full two years ahead of schedule.  The company’s latest fiscal year ended on June 30th.

            Exactly two years ago, the Dallas Opera faced its most severe financial crisis in modern company history, prompting the TDO Board and General Director and CEO Keith Cerny, who assumed the role in May of 2010, to initiate an aggressive restructuring of company operations.  This included the difficult step of cancelling one of the mainstage operas of the 2011-2012 Season, and reducing the 2012-2013 Season to three mainstage operas.  These steps were taken as part of a multi-year plan to restore the company’s financial health while maintaining artistic quality, and to achieve a balanced operating budget no later than the end of the 2014-2015 Season.

The subsequent outpouring of board, trustee and public support allowed the company to build a base of multi-year donor commitments, to secure major new gifts, earn an anonymous $10 million dollar match (through an equal amount in donations to the Cultural Renaissance Endowment Fund), dramatically reduce costs without sacrificing overall artistic quality, and steadily reduce the company’s deficits. Continue reading →

THE DALLAS OPERA PRESENTS OPERA ON A WORLD STAGE!

by Megan Meister

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Contact: Suzanne Calvin 214.443.1014
Suzanne.Calvin@dallasopera.org

Or Megan Meister 214.443.1071
Megan.Meister@dallasopera.org

National Press Representation:
Kirshbaum Demler & Associates: adamm@kirshdem.com or 212-222-4843

THE DALLAS OPERA PRESENTS
 OPERA ON A WORLD STAGE! 

Death and the Powers:
THE GLOBAL
INTERACTIVE SIMULCAST

                   ~~~~                           

SUNDAY, FEBRUARY 16, 2014
AT 2:00 P.M. (Central Time)

THE MARGOT AND BILL WINSPEAR OPERA HOUSE
AT THE AT&T PERFORMING ARTS CENTER, DALLAS TX

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Remote locations throughout the U.S. and Europe, including the Perot Museum of Nature and Science, with new interactive capabilities and views!

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PRODUCED BY: TOD MACHOVER, KEITH CERNY, ROBERT A. ELLIS, MIT MEDIA LAB
AND THE DALLAS OPERA

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Death and the Powers supported in part by a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts

            DALLAS, SEPTEMBER 11, 2013 – The Dallas Opera is privileged to announce an extraordinary and unprecedented experiment in twenty-first century opera: “The Dallas Opera’s Global Interactive Simulcast” of acclaimed American composer Tod Machover’s DEATH AND THE POWERS, scheduled to take place in Dallas on Sunday, February 16th at 2:00 p.m. Central Time, originating in the Margot and Bill Winspear Opera House at the AT&T Performing Arts Center and being simulcast to as many as ten locations in Europe and the U.S. Continue reading →

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 United States.

I was delighted that the most polished singer yesterday was Amanda Woodbury, a soprano who has twice placed second in the Dallas Opera Guild Vocal Competition, and who was invited to join the LA Opera ensemble by Joshua Winograde, who oversees the program, after hearing her as a judge for the Dallas competition.  Her residency in Los Angeles comes to an end soon, but she has grown tremendously under the program, and is being rewarded with a performance of “Micaëla” in their current production of CARMEN later this week.  She is certainly someone to keep an “ear” on.

Last night’s performance of CARMEN starred Brandon Jovanovich as “Don Jose”, who leaves the run in Los Angeles on Sunday to begin rehearsals on Monday in Dallas for the same role.  It will be interesting to see how he approaches this role in what will be a very different production in Dallas. Continue reading →

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

by Jonathan Pell

San Francisco-20130924-00110

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 just three weeks before opening night to take on the demanding title role of the Picker premiere after the originally scheduled artist, Dolora Zajick, withdrew from the project after rehearsing the opera for several weeks.

Pat Racette was in San Francisco rehearsing MEFISTOFELE, which opened the San Francisco Opera season, and bravely agreed to learn the part and save the day.  It was a daring thing to do (particularly considering that there were several performances in the schedule where the productions were on consecutive nights) and from the audience’s reaction last night, also a very smart move on her part.  It is a real “tour de force” and she certainly deserved the ovation that greeted her at the curtain call. Continue reading →

Dallas Opera Perspectives at the Meadows Museum

by Suzanne Calvin

Count me in! Coming to the Meadows Museum, a conversation not to be missed between Dallas Opera General Director and CEO Keith Cerny and the company’s esteemed new music director, Emmanuel Villaume. Details to follow:

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
Friday, September 6, 2013
Contact: Suzanne Calvin 214.443.1014 Or Megan Meister 214.443.1071
suzanne.calvin@dallasopera.org megan.meister@dallasopera.org

THE DALLAS OPERA PRESENTS

“DALLAS OPERA PERSPECTIVES”

With Dallas Opera General Director and CEO Keith Cerny
And Dallas Opera Music Director Emmanuel Villaume
In Partnership with the Meadows Museum of Art
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Discussion of Spanish Art and Bizet’s Carmen
Followed by Special Free Gallery Tour
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Tuesday, October 8, 2013 at 6:30 p.m.
The Meadows Museum at SMU
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Free Covered Parking Available On-Site

DALLAS, SEPTEMBER 6, 2013 – The Dallas Opera, in partnership with the Meadows Museum at Southern Methodist University, is delighted to introduce the first in a series of new programs hosted by Dallas Opera General Director and CEO Keith Cerny and designed to present informed personal perspectives on the arts.
Our first edition of “Dallas Opera Perspectives” taking place on Tuesday, October 8, 2013 at 6:30 p.m. in the Meadows Museum, will introduce Dallas to TDO’s acclaimed new music director, Maestro Emmanuel Villaume, who will apply his keen interest in the visual arts to works in the Spanish collection that “speak to him” in a special way as he prepares to conduct our season-opening production of Georges Bizet’s CARMEN.
“I look forward to October 25th with a sense of anticipation and excitement tempered by a comfortable sense of the familiar,” explains Maestro Villaume.
“The pressure will be on in my first podium appearance as Music Director of the Dallas Opera. However, Carmen, as a mainstay of the French repertoire, is a work I have conducted throughout my career. Over the years, familiarity with Bizet’s masterpiece has generated within me an even greater respect for his musical vision, and I always seek something fresh and revelatory in my approach to the score to bring to every performance.
“One of the great privileges of this career is the ability to travel and discover new cities—in particular, their museums. Dallas, fortunately, is endowed with several world class collections and I am eager to explore them all.
“Studying visual arts is a stimulating activity for me, as it touches on some of the same fundamental artistic and spiritual issues as music, although from a totally different angle. It’s a pastime I find to be as refreshing as it is enlightening.” Continue reading →

Falling Headfirst Into the Arts

by Suzanne Calvin

With a new school year getting underway, it’s the perfect time to work a little culture into your fall family plans. Check out a few of the easily affordable options below.

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
Monday, August 26, 2013
Contact: Suzanne Calvin 214.443.1014 Or Megan Meister 214.443.1071
suzanne.calvin@dallasopera.org megan.meister@dallasopera.org

A Fall Filled With Enchanting Tales
TDO Family Programming
Presented by
Texas Instruments
With additional support from Lockheed Martin
Part of “The Perot Foundation Education and Community Outreach Programs”
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JACK AND THE BEANSTALK
Saturday, October 26th 2:00 p.m.
At the Margot & Bill Winspear Opera House
AT&T Performing Arts Center
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THE DALLAS OPERA FAMILY CONCERT
With Soprano Joanna Mongiardo, Mezzo-Soprano Emily Fons and Maestro Anthony Barrese
Sunday, November 3th 2:00 p.m.
At the Margot & Bill Winspear Opera House
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THE ELIXIR OF LOVE
$5 FAMILY PERFORMANCE,
Saturday, November 9th 2:00 p.m.
At the Margot & Bill Winspear Opera House

DALLAS, AUGUST 26, 2013 – The Dallas Opera is happy to present three weekends of family-friendly programming guaranteed to introduce you and your loved ones to the big, beautiful world of opera. The Dallas Opera Educational/Family Series, part of The Perot Foundation Education and Community Outreach Programs, is presented by Texas Instruments and made possible with additional support from Lockheed Martin.
TDO will present its ever-popular thirty-minute opera by John Davies—a comical adaptation of the familiar tale of JACK AND THE BEANSTALK—on Saturday, October 26th starting at 2:00 p.m. and featuring tenor Jonathan Yarrington as Jack, mezzo-soprano Emily Hueske as Mother/Wife and Bass Travis McGuire as Giant/Trouble. The cast will be accompanied by TDO’s Music Director for Education and Family Programming, Mary Dibbern.
This entrancing children’s tale was brought to life by Dallas Opera Production Designer Tommy Bourgeois. Nancy Schaeffer, Dallas Children’s Theater’s Education Director, staged the work for the Dallas Opera. Continue reading →

Mark Twain’s Wagnerian Adventures

by Suzanne Calvin

What did American literary icon Mark Twain and German music titan Richard Wagner have in common? If you said “Wavy hair,” you are correct! If you said anything else, you’re probably mistaken. Desite the lack of common ground, Twain’s deeply personal impressions of the Bayreuth experience form the basis for this month’s “Off the Cuff” column by General Director and CEO Keith Cerny for “Theater Jones.” You can enjoy it all right here.

Suzanne Calvin, Director of Media and Public Relations

October at TDO: “Just the facts, ma’am.”

by Suzanne Calvin

Coming back from a wind-swept, sea salt, sun-addled holiday weekend, we thought many of you could use a little help in sorting through the upcoming events in October. Get out your Day Planner (digital or otherwise) and have at it!

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
Tuesday, September 3, 2013
Contact: Suzanne Calvin 214.443.1014
Or Megan Meister 214.443.1071
suzanne.calvin@dallasopera.org
megan.meister@dallasopera.org

A FASHION-FORWARD AND STYLISH OCTOBER
AT THE DALLAS OPERA!
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FIRST SIGHT Fashion Show and Luncheon:
Thursday, October 24 at 10:00 a.m.
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FIRST NIGHT Festivities Begin
Friday, October 25 at 5:30 p.m.
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Season Opening Opera: Bizet’s CARMEN
Friday, October 25, 2013 / Curtain Time: 8:00 p.m.!
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2013-14 Season to Launch with FIRST SIGHT Fashion Show and Luncheon, a Free Simulcast at Klyde Warren Park, The Linda and Mitch Hart Season Opening Night Performance, and FIRST NIGHT Dinner, celebrations, and After Party at the Margot and Bill Winspear Opera House in the AT&T Performing Arts Center!

DALLAS, SEPTEMBER 3, 2013 – Get out your dancing shoes, try on the tux, and select your most stylish ensemble or your most outlandish Carmen costume, as Dallas gets ready for a fabulous new season of opera during a particularly fashion-forward month of October!

The Dallas Opera will present an extraordinarily diverse 57th International Season, “By Love Transformed,” sponsored by Texas Instruments Foundation, which will officially kick off when the curtain rises on Friday, October 25, 2013 at 8:00 p.m. (please note the unusual curtain time). The Dallas Opera’s 2013-2014 Season will open with Georges Bizet’s 1875 masterpiece CARMEN in the Margot and Bill Winspear Opera House at the AT&T Performing Arts Center. Single tickets for the Linda and Mitch Hart Season Opening Night Performance and subsequent Sunday matinees and evening performances begin at the low price of just $19 and are on sale now.
Full season subscriptions are now available for as little as $76 for all four outstanding mainstage productions. The Dallas Opera also has two-performance and three-performance subscriptions available as well.
FIRST NIGHT festivities, presented by NGP Energy Capital, get underway at 5:30 p.m. on the Margot and Bill Winspear Opera House Red Carpet at the AT&T Performing Arts Center located in the Dallas Arts District. The lavish dinner is 6:00 – 7:30 p.m. followed by Carmen at 8:00 p.m. The emcees will be faces—and voices—you already know and love, and celebrity guests that evening will include a contingent of top-tier fashion designers accompanying their head-turning models. Together, they will elevate people-watching to the status of art with their “opera-inspired” couture gowns!
Special pre-performance activities will take place in front of a giant outdoor screen in Klyde Warren Park in the Dallas Arts District, including a “Carmen Costume Contest” for men, women and pets—and a “Toreador Song Sing-a-long.” The public is invited to bring a blanket and a picnic basket, and enjoy the evening’s events as they unfold at our free simulcast of CARMEN. Continue reading →

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 heard before was a cycle set to some texts written by Sister Helen Prejean, the inspiration for Heggie’s first opera DEAD MAN WALKING, beautifully sung at the end of the program by Miss Mentzer.

The rest of the material was new to me (including one song performed by a surprise guest, mezzo-soprano Joyce DiDonato, who is a great friend of the composer, and for whom he is writing GREAT SCOTT, commissioned by the Dallas Opera, and scheduled to open the season in the fall of 2015.) Continue reading →