Prelude Talks | Spotlight Series

Prelude Talks

Your road map for each evening’s performance! These talks are complimentary to ticket holders and are held in Stieren Orchestra Hall twice before most performances. The first talk is given 2 hours before the performance and the second is 1 hour before. For best availability and due to popularity, the first talk is recommended. Prelude Talks are not offered on June 28, 2019, or before the Apprentice Showcase Scenes.

2019 Prelude Talks Speaker Schedule is TBA - please check back

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Spotlight Series — illuminating topics in Opera since 2012!

In the dark about opera? Well, lighten up with The Santa Fe Opera’s Spotlight Series! Join conductor Oliver Prezant for five fun, informative talks presented in Santa Fe and Albuquerque on the Santa Fe Opera's 2019 season. Each presentation begins with a preview of one of the five productions of the upcoming season, and each looks at a variety of operas through the lens of a single topic. Whether you’re a newcomer or an aficionado, these engaging, accessible presentations will increase your enjoyment and understanding of opera and enrich your experience in Santa Fe this summer. Admission is free.

2019 Spotlight Series Schedule

La bohème, by Giacomo Puccini
Heroic Banter meets the Floating World of Beauty

Sunday, April 14, 2:00 PM - Albuquerque, Las Puertas Event Center
Friday, April 26, 6:00 PM - Santa Fe, Collected Works Bookstore and Coffeehouse

Recipe for a smash hit opera: place four guys in a small Parisian garret. Add art, music, poetry, and poverty. Throw in one coquettish vixen and one beautiful, consumptive seamstress. Shake well, and voila! - fantastic dialogue, duets to die for, and music that makes grown men and women weep. Comes with a side sampler of operatic "meet-cute" stories that will help you see Puccini's classic in a larger context.

The Pearl Fishers, by George Bizet
Who's Your Buddy? Love and Friendship in an Island Paradise

Friday, May 3, 6:00 PM - Santa Fe, Collected Works Bookstore and Coffeehouse
Sunday, May 5, 2:00 PM - Albuquerque, Las Puertas Event Center

Sure you hunt tigers and panthers, and sure, you and your best friend both love the same girl. But he's the king, and you just got caught kissing her. Uh-oh. Bizet's debut as a composer of French opera is exotic, melodic, and, I daresay, aquatic! We'll look at a few other operatic examples of lovers in trouble to see where The Pearl Fishers fits in the greater scheme of things.

Così fan tutte, by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
Mozart and the Music of Fidelity

Sunday, May 12, 2:00 PM - Albuquerque, Las Puertas Event Center
Friday, May 17, 6:00 PM - Santa Fe, Collected Works Bookstore and Coffeehouse

So what if some guy (your sister's boyfriend in disguise!) shows up begging for your love? You're in a committed relationship, right? Wait a minute . . . is this some kind of a test? Maybe so, but one thing's for sure: Mozart's brilliant musical characterizations and Da Ponte's tight comedic text make for a searching exploration of love and faithfulness then, in 1790, and now, in a very different time. We'll cozy up to Così, and look at some similar operatic "test cases" as well.

Jenůfa, by Leos Janacek
Love and Death in a Czech Village

Sunday, May 19, 2:00 PM - Albuquerque, Las Puertas Event Center
Friday, June 7, 6:00 PM - Santa Fe, Collected Works Bookstore and Coffeehouse

Getting your pretty stepdaughter married shouldn't be too difficult, right? Unless someone gets jealous, or she's pregnant and no one knows it . . . Janacek's breakout opera is a closer look at the pressures and perils of village life in the late nineteenth century, something our great grandparents may have experienced firsthand. The lyrical, dramatic score is Janacek's personal blend of the folk music that fascinated him and the new ideas in music and opera that were burgeoning around 1900. We'll also consider some other folk-themed operas.

The Thirteenth Child, by Poul Ruders
Fairytale Operas: The Grimm Reality

Sunday, June 9, 2:00 PM - Albuquerque, Las Puertas Event Center
Friday, June 14, 6:00 PM - Santa Fe, Collected Works Bookstore and Coffeehouse

Somewhere in memory, somewhere between the mythology of the ancient world and our current fascination with super-heroes, vampires, and wizards, the supernatural glow of childhood fairytales illumines our collective consciousness. We'll explore the world premiere of Poul Ruders' The Thirteenth Child, as we get to know the composer and his music, and look at aspects of other fairytale operas.

About presenter Oliver Prezant

Oliver Prezant has presented lectures and education programs for The Santa Fe Opera, the Santa Fe Chamber Music Festival, Opera Southwest, Chamber Music Albuquerque, and many other organizations. His unique presentations have helped thousands of music lovers deepen their understanding and enjoyment of music.


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