Music by Giacomo Puccini
Libretto by Giuseppe Giacosa and Luigi Illica
Performed in Italian with English supertitles
When communities experience deep crisis we need the arts more than ever. It is therefore with a heavy heart that we must announce the postponement of this spring's performances of Madame Butterfly. This difficult decision was made in careful collaboration with our artists and staff, and in compliance with federal, state, and city directives to help slow the spread of the COVID-19 virus. We are pleased to share that it is our intention to bring the production to Philadelphia in Spring 2022 with all contracted artists invited to return to their roles. More details.
The famous tragedy of the young geisha Cio-Cio San and the American naval officer who pursues, then betrays, her comes alive with a fresh viewpoint for today’s audiences. Experience Puccini’s beloved masterpiece from Cio-Cio San’s perspective as she transforms from an object of lust into a fully realized woman, wife, and mother. Grounded in the original historical setting of the mid-19th century, the achingly beautiful music soars above a modern-day commentary on power dynamics and western exploitation. Opera News calls the production “proof that a ‘traditional’ approach need not lack excitement, credibility and passion.”
Soprano Eri Nakamura, “a wonderfully characterful singer” (Gramophone) makes her company and role debut as Cio-Cio San, and Bryan Hymel (2012’s La bohème) returns to Opera Philadelphia in the role of Lt. Pinkerton.
Both making company debuts, baritone Anthony Clark Evans is a "warm-toned, vivacious and humane" Sharpless (San Francisco Chronicle), and mezzo Kristen Choi reprises her “warm and lovely Suzuki” (Washington Post). “Outstanding” tenor Julius Ahn (Opera magazine), last seen in Opera Philadelphia’s Turandot, revisits Goro, his signature role; Wei Wu, a top prize-winner in the Taiwan Vocal Competition, portrays Bonze; and “promising lyric baritone” Takaoki Onishi (Opera News) takes on the role of Prince Yamadori.
Dates are Apr. - May 2020.
|Fri, Apr 24||8:00 p.m.|
|Sun, Apr 26||2:00 p.m.|
|Wed, Apr 29||7:00 p.m.|
|Fri, May 1||8:00 p.m.|
|Sun, May 3||2:00 p.m.|
The running time is approximately 2 hours and 32 minutes including one 20-minute intermission.
Production of Opernhaus Zürich
The Academy Series is underwritten, in part, by Judy and Peter Leone.
Cast & Creative Team
- Michael Levine Set Design
- Annemarie Woods * Costume Design
- Franck Evin * Lighting Design
- Hans Rudolf Kunz * Revival Lighting Designer
- Elizabeth Braden Chorus Master
- Lisa Anderson Stage Manager
- Gregory Boyle Assistant Director
- Jennifer Shaw Assistant Stage Manager
- Savannah Valigura Assistant Stage Manager
- *Opera Philadelphia debut
Giacomo Puccini was born on December 22, 1858, in Lucca, Italy, where since the 1730s his family had been tightly interwoven with the musical life of the city, providing five generations of organists and composers to the Cathedral of San Martino, Lucca’s religious heart. It was therefore taken for granted that Giacomo would carry on this legacy, succeeding his father, Michele, in the role first held by his great-great grandfather. Read more.