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Side view of theater at dusk with white baffles

The Golden Cockerel Opens July 15


The Company Premiere of Rimsky-Korsakov’s Rarely Performed Russian Tale

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The Golden Cockerel graphic

July 15, 19, 28 at 8:30 PM; August 3, 9, 18 at 8:00 PM

Sung in Russian with Opera Titles in English and Spanish.

A co-production with The Dallas Opera. A company premiere.

First performed at Moscow’s Solodovnikove Theatre on October 7, 1909.

Production underwriting support generously provided by The Tobin Endowment and James R. Seitz, Jr.

The final opera by Rimsky-Korsakov, the Russian nationalist composer best known for his exquisite symphonic suite Scheherazade, is at once a simple and complex adaptation of Alexander Pushkin’s modern fairytale. Like a Fabergé egg, The Golden Cockerel is a brilliantly constructed and ornamented work of art containing an even greater and more surprising treasure—a moral for those in power who do not take their responsibility seriously.

“Our production evokes the world of Diaghilev and the Ballets Russes while taking us on a journey via modern technology and video,” said Director Paul Curran. “The music is truly magical and sensual, comic and deeply moving. It’s a hugely surprising undiscovered jewel of an opera.”

Baritone Tim Mix, who made his Santa Fe Opera debut in 2016 as Count Capulet in Roméo et Juliette, replaces Eric Owens as Tsar Dodon.

Conductor: Emmanuel Villaume

Director: Paul Curran

Scenic & Costume Design: Gary McCann*

Lighting Design: Paul Hackenmueller*

Projection Design: Driscoll Otto*

Chorus Master: Susanne Sheston

Tsar Dodon: Tim Mix, baritone

Commander Polkan: Kevin Burdette, bass

Amelfa: Meredith Arwady, contralto

Astrologer: Barry Banks, tenor

The Queen of Shemakha: Venera Gimadieva*, soprano



Additional Events Surrounding The Golden Cockerel 

Preview Dinners

Enjoy an opera themed dinner, including wine, at our open-air cantina on the beautifully landscaped rehearsal grounds. A speaker will offer a brief introduction to the evening’s opera during dessert. $66 per person.

Prelude Talks

Your road map for that evening’s performance, these talks are complementary to ticket holders and are held in

Stieren Orchestra Hall twice before most performances. The first talk is given two hours before the performance and the second is one hour before. Please inform us if you would like to pick up your tickets in time to attend a lecture, as we generally open the Media Lounge just one hour before the performance time. Prelude Talks are not offered on June 30, or before the Apprentice Scenes on August 13 and 20.

Backstage Tours

Come discover how an opera production comes together. On our “behind-the-scenes” tour, you will explore many of our production and front-of-house areas. Tours for the 2017 season are offered once daily at 9:00 am, Monday through Friday: May 29, through August 25, 2017. One hour long, meet at the Box Office. The cost is $10 for adults, $8 for seniors and free for children and young adults up to age 22. Comfortable dress and footwear are recommended.

Ranch Tours

An extended tour of the grounds, known as the “Opera Ranch,” meets at the Box Office at 10:00 am, on June 30th, July 28th and August 25th in 2017, and includes a “Meet the Artist” presentation by one of our apprentice singers. The Ranch Tour is $10.

Opera Insider Days

A free event hosted by The Guilds of The Santa Fe Opera on Saturdays (June 3– August 26, 2017). At 8:30 am, join us for coffee, juice and pastries followed by a lively talk about a particular area or opera-related craft from an opera insider, and concluding with a tour of the backstage. For those attending with children, ask about our scavenger hunt.

Family Nights

July 19 and August 9 have been designated as Family Nights for The Golden Cockerel. Tickest are just $15 for youth (ages 6-22) and $30 for the first two adults ($50 for each additional adult). Call the Box Office at 505.986.5900 to reserve.

The mission of The Santa Fe Opera is to advance the operatic art form by presenting ensemble performances of the highest quality in a unique setting with a varied repertory of new, rarely performed, and standard works; to ensure the excellence of opera’s future through apprentice programs for singers, technicians, and arts administrators; and to foster and enrich an understanding and appreciation of opera among a diverse public.