Julius Ceasar is reimagined in 1930s Hollywood. Photo by Felix Sanchez
Liudmyla Monastyrska will star in Norma. Photo by Cory Weaver
The Lyric Opera of Chicago's La Traviata. Photo by Robert Kusel
HGO is the first major American opera house to present West Side Story. Artwork by Gracie Padron
Soprano Christine Goerke will portray Elektra. Photo by Robert Kusel
With Houston Grand Opera‘s announcement of the 2017-18 season, the venerable company takes a traditional route on the one hand while venturing into interesting new territory on the other.
Bookended with two familiar titles — La Traviata and Norma — the new season will feature Francesca Zambello‘s West Side Story in its first presentation by a major American opera house and the world premiere of the children’s story The House Without a Christmas Tree.
“To celebrate the centennial of the American musical genius Leonard Bernstein,” artistic and music director Patrick Summers noted, “HGO is proud to present the first major American opera house production of his iconic West Side Story, which has been performed by several European opera companies, and which will speak to us with fresh relevance through the vision of director Francesca Zambello.”
HGO’s 63rd season will open with Verdi’s La Traviata, October 20-November 11, which will overlap with Handel’s Julius Ceasar featuring countertenor Anthony Roth Costanzo, October 27-November 10. Fasten your seat belts as this production is retooled to the golden age of 1930s Hollywood.
Just in time for the holidays, The House Without a Christmas Tree premieres November 30 and continues through December 17. The opera is based on the story by Gail Rock and the 1972 television film of the same name.
The new year gets off to a dramatically intense start with Richard Strauss’ Elektra, January 19-February 2, then takes a frivolous turn with Rossini’s The Barber of Seville. West Side Story follows April 20-May 6 with Norma concluding the season, April 27-May 11.