KUCO presents:   San Francisco Opera

A leader among international opera companies for nine decades, San Francisco Opera was founded by Gaetano Merola (1881–1953) and incorporated in 1923. The Company's first performance took place on September 26, 1923 in the City's Civic Auditorium. Originally presented over two weeks, San Francisco Opera's season now contains approximately 75 performances of ten operas between September and July.

Since 1923, San Francisco Opera has presented the United States debut performances of numerous artists, including Vladimir Atlantov, Piotr Beczala, Marie Collier, Mafalda Favero, Tito Gobbi, Sena Jurinac, Anna Netrebko, Leontyne Price, Elisabeth Schwarzkopf, Renata Tebaldi, and Ingvar Wixell; conductors Marco Armiliato, Valery Gergiev, Charles Mackerras, Georg Solti, and Silvio Varviso; and directors Francis Ford Coppola, Harry Kupfer, and Jean-Pierre Ponnelle.

Since its inception, San Francisco Opera has embodied a spirit of innovation by presenting the world premieres of Blood Moon (1961), Angle of Repose (1976), The Dangerous Liaisons (1994), A Streetcar Named Desire (1998), Dead Man Walking (2000), Arshak II (2001) and Doctor Atomic (2005). Under David Gockley’s leadership, the Company has added five new operas to that list: Philip Glass and Christopher Hampton’s Appomattox (2007); Stewart Wallace and Amy Tan’s The Bonesetter’s Daughter (2008); Christopher Theofanidis and Donna Di Novelli’s Heart of a Soldier (2011); Nolan Gasser and Carey Harrison's The Secret Garden (2013), a co-commission with Cal Performances at UC Berkeley; and Mark Adamo's The Gospel of Mary Magdalene(2013).

In 2007, San Francisco Opera  created the Koret-Taube Media Suite. The first permanent high-definition broadcast-standard video production facility installed in any American opera house, the Koret-Taube Media Suite gives the Company the permanent capability to produce simulcasts and other projects including OperaVision, where retractable screens provide full stage, close-up and mid-range ensemble shots in high-definition video for patrons in balcony seats. In 2007, San Francisco Opera also launched radio partnerships the WFMT Radio Network in Chicago, returning regular San Francisco Opera broadcasts to the national and international radio airwaves for the first time in 25 years.


Post-opera programming is locally produced by volunteer Lane Whitesell

Opera Links

     Austin Lyric Opera www.austinlyricopera.com

     Dallas Opera www.dallasopera.org

     Houston Grand Opera www.houstongrandopera.org/

     San Antonio Opera www.saopera.com

     Santa Fe Opera www.santafeopera.org

     Tulsa Opera  www.tulsaopera.com

     Wichita Grand Opera  www.wichitagrandopera.org

Opera in HD

Click here for theater showtimes and ticket information.


Michael Mayer’s bold new production of “Rigoletto” locates Verdi’s tragedy of lust, betrayal and revenge to 1960 Las Vegas, broadcast by the Metropolitan Opera this Saturday, February 16 at noon. The performance stars Zeljko Lucic in the title role, with Diana Damrau as his beautiful daughter and Piotr Beczala as the womanizing duke. KCSC’s Lane Whitesell hosts.


Saturday, February 9, tune in at noon to the Metropolitan Opera broadcast of Donizetti’s melodic classic “L’Eliser d’Amore,” served by a quartet of bel canto stars: Juan Diego Florez and Diane Damrau play the unlikely lovers, Mariusz Kwiecien the vainglorious sergeant, and Alessandro Corbelli, the dispenser of the elixir.


Join us this Saturday, February 2nd at noon for the Metropolitan Opera broadcast of Rossini’s comic opera, “Le Comte Ory,” featuring tenor Juan Diego Florez as the lecherous Count Ory and soprano Pretty Yende as the Countess Adele.


This Saturday at noon is the Metropolitan Opera broadcast of Donizetti’s “Maria Stuarda,” starring mezzo-soprano Joyce Di Donato (pictured) as a luminous Mary Stuart in David McVicar’s premiere Met production.


David McVicar’s vivid production of Verdi’s intense melodrama “Il Travatore,” returns to the Met and airs at noon Saturday, Jan. 12.
The performance features soprano Patricia Racette, mezzo-soprano Stephanie Blythe (pictured), and tenor Marco Berti.

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