Week of January 18: Lyric Commentaries for opera streaming and more

Our lineup starts early this week so that we may bookend our time with world-class productions from San Francisco Opera. Then, we’ll visit LA Opera for their digital short series, which highlights works from up-and-coming composers. Featured this week is Missy Mazzoli, who has composed a new work with librettist Royce Vavrek (they’re the creators of Proving Up, which will be presented by Lyric in a future season).

Then, we’ll enjoy two operas from Houston Grand Opera, followed by something familiar and new from HGO. On Friday, tenor Lawrence Brownlee stars in Giving Voice: Lawrence Brownlee and Friends Sing Opera, Gospel, and Standards. We cannot wait to see what is sure to be an incredible evening of music and community!

Lyric Opera Commentaries discuss the synopses, music, and some historical insights into the creation of the world's most beloved operas, and musical masterpieces you might never have experienced.

Lyric Opera Commentaries are sponsored by the Patrick G. and Shirley W. Ryan Foundation in memory of their parents.

Saturday, January 16 and Sunday, January 17

San Francisco Opera
Gounod: Romeo and Juliet


This production from
San Francisco Opera stars Pene Pati, Nadine Sierra, Lucas Meachem, James Creswell and Timothy Mix, and was directed by Jean Louis Grinda. Romeo and Juliet was conducted by Yves Abel in 2019. This opera stream premieres on Saturday, January 16 at 12pm CT, and will be available through Sunday, January 17.

Lyric Commentary from the 2015/16 Season is by Roger Pines.

Romeo and Juliet

by Charles Gounod

Lyric Opera Commentaries are sponsored by the Patrick G. and Shirley W. Ryan Foundation in memory of their parents.

© 2015/16 Lyric Opera Commentaries
Original sound recordings of musical excerpts used by permission of Warner Classics. All rights reserved. Recording & Production services provided by Mark Travis.
A project of the Women’s Board.

Monday, January 18

LA Opera
Mazzoli: The West is a Land of Infinite Beginnings


This digital short from 
LA Opera is by composer Missy Mazzoli and librettist Royce Vavrek. The West is a Land of Infinite Beginnings features bass Andrew Harris and the Chicago-based International Contemporary Ensemble, is directed by James Darrah, and is conducted by Christopher Rountree. This opera stream premiered on January 15, and is available through January 29.

Tuesday, January 19

Houston Grand Opera
Mozart: The Magic Flute


This radio broadcast from Houston Grand Opera stars Eric Cutler, Albina Shagimuratova, and Patrick Carfizzi, and was directed by Kevin Newbury. The Magic Flute was conducted by Steven Sloane in 2008. This broadcast will be available through February 15, 2021.

Lyric Commentary from the 2016/17 Season is by Anthony Freud and Nicholas Ivor Martin.

The Magic Flute

by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

Lyric Opera Commentaries are sponsored by the Patrick G. and Shirley W. Ryan Foundation in memory of their parents.

© 2016/17 Lyric Opera Commentaries
Musical excerpts provided through generous arrangement with Warner Classics, Official Education and Promotion Music Provider for Lyric Opera of Chicago. All rights reserved. Recording & Production services provided by Mark Travis.
A project of the Women's Board.

Thursday, January 21

Houston Grand Opera
Rossini: The Barber of Seville


This radio broadcast from Houston Grand Opera stars Richard Croft, Joyce DiDonato, and Earle Patriarco, and was directed by Lindy Hume. The Barber of Seville was conducted by Patrick Summers in 2004. This broadcast will be available through January 25, 2021.

Lyric Commentary from the 2019/20 Season is by Nicholas Ivor Martin.

The Barber of Seville

By Gioachino Rossini

Lyric Opera Commentaries are sponsored by the Patrick G. and Shirley W. Ryan Foundation in memory of their parents.

© 2019/20 Lyric Opera Commentaries. All rights reserved.
The music featured is generously furnished by Warner Classics.
A project of the Women’s Board.

Friday, January 22

Houston Grand Opera
Giving Voice

Houston Grand Opera presents Giving Voice: Lawrence Brownlee and Friends Sing Opera, Gospel, and Standards—internationally renowned tenor Brownlee joins an all-Black group of opera stars for a second, digital installment of this wonderful celebration of diverse voices.

This performance premieres on January 22 at 7:30pm CT, and will be available through February 22, 2021.

Saturday, January 23 and Sunday, January 24

San Francisco Opera
Saint-Saëns: Samson and Delilah


This production from San Francisco Opera stars Clifton Forbis and Olga Borodina, and was directed by Sandra Bernhard. Samson and Delilah was conducted by Patrick Summers in 2007.

This opera stream premieres on Saturday, January 23 at 12pm CT, and will be available through Sunday, January 24.

Pasión Latina

Pasión Latina

Celebrate music of the Spanish-speaking world with a free virtual concert starring and hosted by renowned soprano and Lyric favorite Ana María Martínez, and featuring prominent Ryan Opera Center artists and alumni. 

These engaging artists will perform a dynamic selection of some of their favorite music from Puerto Rico, Mexico, Cuba, Guatemala, Argentina, and Spain, with piano accompaniment by Ryan Opera Center music director Craig Terry and current Ensemble pianist Chris Reynolds.

AVAILABLE FOR STREAMING THROUGH JANUARY 2021

Lawrence Brownlee and Friends: The Next Chapter

Lawrence Brownlee and Friends: The Next Chapter

Lyric's Ryan Opera Center presents a free virtual concert celebrating the depth and breadth of Black artistry, hosted by world-renowned tenor Lawrence Brownlee, who also serves as artistic advisor for the event. The concert also features prominent Ryan Opera Center alumni — soprano Whitney Morrison, mezzo-soprano J'Nai Bridges, and baritone Will Liverman — and three current 2020/21 Ryan Opera Center Ensemble members — tenors Martin Luther Clark and Lunga Eric Hallam, and baritone Leroy Davis.

Header photo is from Lyric's Lawrence Brownlee and Friends: The Next Chapter (Lyric Opera of Chicago). 

All other photos: Lyric Opera of Chicago, Svetlana Pasedko, Todd Rosenberg

Music used in Lyric Commentaries is provided courtesy of Warner Classics, the Official Education and Promotion Music Provider of Lyric Opera of Chicago.