Soprano Heidi Stober springs to new heights as Norina in Don Pasquale at San Francisco Opera. With her opening night performance Stober marked a smashing entrance into bel canto opera and sparked what looks like a long-term association with composer Gaetano Donizetti and friends. Who around here knew she could sing like that?
Conducted by Nicola Luisotti, the production by director David McVicar features tenor Yonghoon Lee in the title role, Anna Pirozzi as Maddalena, J'Nai Bridges as Bersi, and George Gagnidze as Carlo Gérard. Stylish sets by Robert Jones and period costumes by Jenny Tiramani capture the tension and disparity between the Haves and the Have Nots.
From one-night stands to marriages that have lasted six or seven decades, romance has always been a curious ingredient in relationships. Primitive cultures that relied on agriculture for survival often practiced fertility rites designed to please the gods in the hope of being blessed with abundant crops.