San Francisco Opera presents Eun Sun Kim Conducts Verdi, a one-night-only concert honoring the work of Italian composer Giuseppe Verdi on Thursday, June 30 at 7:30 pm at the War Memorial Opera House. Caroline H. Hume Music Director Eun Sun Kim, closes her first season as leader of the Company’s artistic forces, conducting the San Francisco Opera Orchestra, Chorus and soloists Nicole Car, Arturo Chacón-Cruz, Etienne Dupuis and Soloman Howard with current San Francisco Opera Adler Fellows soprano Mikayla Sager, tenor Edward Graves, bass Stefan Egerstrom. Chorus Director John Keene, who begins his tenure this summer, prepares the Chorus.
The concert is the sole chance to experience Kim’s conducting during the Company’s Summer Season, which includes performances of Mozart’s Don Giovanni and Bright Sheng and David Henry Hwang’s Dream of the Red Chamber. Verdi’s seminal operas Luisa Miller, Il Trovatore and Don Carlo are featured on the program.
Luisa Miller, a rarely heard work from the composer’s middle period, is full of longing melodies that reflect a story centered on a couple’s love, complicated by politics. The concert continues with selections from the propulsive score of one of Verdi’s most well-known titles, Il Trovatore. The second half of the concert is dedicated to Don Carlo, a work of political intrigue, love triangles and familial duty, set during the Spanish Inquisition. The Carlo-Posa Act II duet, auto-da-fé and rarely performed ballet music (the latter from the French version, Don Carlos, composed for the Paris Opera) are among the highlights from Verdi’s grand opera which has multiple performing versions.
Australian soprano Nicole Car bows with the Company for the first time as Donna Elvira in Don Giovanni this summer and performs as a soloist at Eun Sun Kim Conducts Verdi. Of her role debut as Violetta in Verdi’s La Traviata at the Sydney Opera House, Limelight Magazine observed, “… she is a complete performer, equally seductive both vocally and dramatically.” Her recent leading roles include Mimì in Puccini’s La Bohème (Vienna State Opera, Metropolitan Opera), Elisabetta in Verdi’s Don Carlo (Deutsche Oper Berlin), Donna Elvira in Mozart’s Don Giovanni (Paris Opera) and Tatyana in Tchaikovsky’s Eugene Onegin (Dallas Symphony Orchestra, Vienna).