In This Issue
· The Feature:
  Verdi and HIS

· Special Feature
  A Sense of Mystery

· Scotch Whiskey  

· Photo Gallery 

· Video Blogs:
  Jonathan Pell

· Tantalizing





Giuseppi Verdi

Soon after the triumphant premiere of Macbeth at the Teatro della Pergola of Florence on 14 March 1847, Verdi dedicated its vocal score to his father-in-law, Antonio Barezzi:

"Here now is this Macbeth, which I love in preference to my other operas, and thus deem more worthy of being presented to you. The heart offers it; may the heart receive it."

Verdi’s affection for his first opera based on Shakespeare was manifest throughout its rehearsal period. He knew that the success of the work depended on three dramatic presences: Lady Macbeth, Macbeth, and the chorus of witches. In a series of remarkable letters to performers and impresarios, both in 1847 and later, in 1865, when he prepared a revised version of the opera for Paris, he tried to help them understand his dramatic and musical aims. Through them, we can learn much that still bears on performing Macbeth today.

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Macbeth from Seattle Opera

The problem with writing a compelling article about the fascinating production of Giuseppe Verdi’s MACBETH that will open The Dallas Opera “Death by Diva!” Season on November 9th is that nobody wants to let the proverbial “cat out of the bag.”  Talk with the seasoned pros who are now in the process of putting together this new Seattle Opera production, and the choice of terms becomes, suddenly, quite mysterious.

“MACBETH contains very, very interesting special effects,” says Director of Production John Gage, “and dramatic lighting plays a huge role in the overall impact of the piece.” 

“The costumes are certainly eclectic,” adds Technical Director Drew Field, “The director and designers were evidently aiming for a timeless mixture of periods, according to one interview I read.  This was done in order to point out that this essential human problem of lust for power and glory are not confined to any particular nation-state or era.”

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1. What production are you most looking forward to?
The Merry Widow
Porgy and Bess

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Participate in the creation of the Margot and Bill Winspear Opera House in a way that directly benefits The Dallas Opera.  Your gift to OPERAtion HQ will assure the elimination of annual rental expenses and streamline the company’s efficiency. 

No gift is too large or too small, and your gift or pledge now will result in points used in determining your seating priority in the Winspear.  For further information, please contact Cynthia Young, Director of Development, at 214.443.1088 or


Supers stand guard in Nabucco

Excitement was in the air last week at the Karayanis Rehearsal Production Center where over sixty men, women and children gathered for a chance to share the stage with some of opera’s greatest living artists and up-and-coming stars.  Ranging in age from four to around age 70, these would-be supernumeraries will perform non-singing roles as gallant soldiers, exhausted refugees, convivial party guests, business-minded merchants, devout worshippers and more, throughout the 2007-2008 “Death by Diva!” Season.  And the simple fact is: Opera wouldn’t be opera without them.

“It was certainly a little surprising to see that much of a rush, especially in the first hour of auditions,” says Dallas Opera Production Assistant Brett Anders.  “There was a pretty even flow of people and, once we got into the rhythm, we were able to move pretty quickly.  All in all, it was a highly efficient process.”

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For half a century, The Dallas Opera has hosted numerous important American debuts ranging from Dame Joan Sutherland to director/designer Franco Zeffirelli.  Our 2007-2008 Season Opener, Verdi’s MACBETH, is no exception.  Director of Artistic Administration Jonathan Pell explains that we can look forward to two notable debuts: luminous Russian soprano Tatiana Serjan and passionate Italian baritone Alberto Gazale making their first appearances on the American Opera stage.

“Tatiana Serjan is simply the most exciting Verdi soprano I have heard in recent years,” says Jonathan. “The voice is powerful, yet beautiful, thrilling in declamatory passages but delicate enough for exquisite coloratura singing.

“She is also a beautiful woman and a very intense performer on stage. The Dallas Opera is honored and delighted that she will be making her American stage debut with these performances.”

And what about our leading man, singing the Shakespearean title role?

“Alberto Gazale is one of Italy's leading baritones, and has sung frequently at Milan's Teatro alla scala, as well as many other important European theatres,” says Mr. Pell. “We are extremely proud that he, also, will be making his American stage debut at The Dallas Opera, in one of Verdi's most challenging roles, with which he has had great success in several productions abroad.”

So, enjoy the show and hang onto your program book; it could become a ‘collectible’ in no time!



The number thirteen proved to be a lucky number for the 33 members who traveled to Toronto on October 11th for The Dallas Opera Guild’s 13th consecutive opera trip led by Sandra and Bill Sanderson. In spite of forecasts for heavy rain each day, the weather proved to be sunny and refreshingly cool. The members enjoyed the Sheraton Centre Toronto with its beautiful garden atrium, its easy access to shops and the Hudson’s Bay department store. The group also enjoyed two lovely meals together at Mediterra on Thursday and Tundra restaurant on Saturday before the opera. Friday’s 4-hour tour of the city and the harbour allowed participants to experience the varied architecture of Toronto. The CN tower is ever present and seems to follow one around the city. The view of the city from the harbour was incredible, reminding the group of Manhattan Island. Tour guide Maureen made a special effort to arrange a visit for the group to the unusual BCE building which features the Allen Lambert Galleria, an award-winning, six story pedestrian avenue conceived by Santiago Calatrava. The Galleria's roof and structure are simply awesome. One part is reminiscent of palm trees reaching for the sunlight. It is 85-feet high, 45-feet wide, and 380-feet from end to end and houses Toronto’s oldest surviving stone building, the former Commercial Bank of Midland (built 1845).

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MaxMara Runway Event benefiting The Dallas Opera
Saturday, November 03, 4:00PM

Visit for more information and to buy your tickets.

Use promotion code: LUXE and a portion of your ticket purchase for this runway event will benefit The Dallas Opera.



"Death by Diva" Season Preview - Nov. 3

The Dallas Opera is proud to present a FREE “Insider’s Look” at the action-packed 2007-2008 “Death by Diva!”

The “Death by Diva!” Season Preview Event will be held for one day only, Saturday, November 3rd from 11:00 am until 2:00 pm in The Dallas Opera’s Rehearsal/Production Center located at 4301 S. Fitzhugh (just outside Fair Park). .

Schedule highlights: A Season Overview with Director of Artistic Administration Jonathan Pell. SALOME model presentation and design discussion with Technical Director Drew Field, legendary costume designer Peter J. Hall.

The latest on the state-of-the-art construction of the Margot and Bill Winspear Opera House with Michael Rilley, Vice Pres. of Operations for the Dallas Center for the Performing Arts.

BRAVO 50! 50th Anniversary Concert and Gala

fleming2 The “Death by Diva!” season will mark the return of one of the most sought-after singers of our time, soprano Renée Fleming, for a special gala event celebrating the fiftieth anniversary of the now-legendary Maria Callas concert that inaugurated The Dallas Opera in 1957. This Bravo 50! Concert & Gala, featuring Ms. Fleming and special guest star Grammy Award-winning jazz trumpeter Chris Botti , will be held Saturday, November 17, 2007 at the Morton H. Meyerson Symphony Center located in the Downtown Dallas Arts District.

Gala ticket prices are $1,000 per person and include a pre-concert cocktail reception, concert with Renée Fleming, elegant seated dinner and dancing with The Hunter Sullivan Orchestra.

Concert only tickets are also available and begin at $85. Click here to buy.

For more information, call Katie Buchanan at 214-443-1063 or e-mail her at

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