performers on stage dancing

On Stage

Bandits, swashbucklers, and star-crossed lovers populate a season of pageantry and high drama inspired by the music and history of Spain, in Opera Santa Barbara’s 30th anniversary season.

Fri, Sep 29, 2023 (7:30pm) & Sun, Oct 1, 2023 (2:30pm)

Georges Bizét, 1875

Georges Bizet’s verismo opera ‘Carmen,’ based on a French novella, is about a fiery young woman who seduces a soldier, ultimately leading to his demise.

Genre: Drama set in Seville, Spain around 1820
Running time: 3 hours
Language: French with English supertitles
Venue: Granada Theatre

Fri, Nov 10, 7:30pm - SB & Sun, Nov 12, 2:00pm - Thousand Oaks

Greek soprano Eleni Calenos, has portrayed Puccini and Verdi heroines throughout the United Stated in performances that were hailed as “for the ages, both vocally and dramatically”  by Opera News,  “searing…, mercurial, heart-on-the sleeve” by The Wall Street Journal, and “a true wonder” by the Houston Press.  

Metropolitan Opera Competition 2022 Grand Prize winner Jana McIntyre has performed with Santa Fe Opera, Lyric Opera of Chicago, and Arizona opera, in addition to several roles with Opera Santa Barbara.  Jana, whose repertoire includes baroque and bel canto operas, contemporary works, and musical theater, has been praised for her “dancer’s grace, mercurial wit, and vibrant soprano tone” by Opera News and her “…movie star looks and the poise to match” by Opera Wire.  

The program will include selections from Maria Callas’ signature repertoire, such as The Barber of Seville, Madama Butterfly, Rigoletto, and Norma.

Dec 1–3, 2023

Xavier Montsalvatge , 1948

El Gato con Botas originally premiered in Barcelona in 1948. Rarely performed, this age-old children’s story tells of the wealth-seeking, match-making cat who, in return for a hat, a sword and a pair of boots, secures for his young master (a lowly miller) a kingdom and a royal marriage to a princess, tricking a slow-witted ogre out of his castle along the way.

From its opening Montsalvatge’s music is energetic, tuneful and full of catchy rhythms, lush melodies and feline musical effects!

(via MidWalesOpera)

This one hour production features current and former members of our Chrisman Studio Artist Program and is perfect for the whole family.

Fri, Feb 9, 2024 (7:30pm) & Sun, Feb 11, 2024 (2:30pm)

Giuseppe Verdi, 1853

Verdi’s dark historical melodrama Il Trovatore (“The troubadour”) is a story of superstition, revenge, and ill-fated love set in medieval Spain and contains some of Verdi’s most passionate melodies including the famous “Anvil Chorus”.


Genre: Historical drama
Running time: 2 hr 30 minutes
Language: Italian with projected English surtitles
Venue: Lobero Theatre

Fri, Apr 19, 2024 (7:30pm) & Sun, Apr 21, 2024 (2:30pm)

Héctor Armienta, 2022

Hector Armienta’s swashbuckling adventure Zorro is based on the adventures of Johnston McCully’s legendary pulp hero, the dashing masked vigilante who defends the commoners and indigenous peoples of California against tyrannical officials. 

Genre: Adventure Opera
Running time: 2 hours
Language: Sung in English and Spanish with surtitles
Venue: Lobero Theatre

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performers on stage