Sat10252014

Stepping Out

West Bay Opera takes another stab at ‘Tosca’


courtesy of WEst Bay Opera
Soprano Stacey Stofferahn sings the title role in West Bay Opera’s production of “Tosca,” slated to open next weekend in Palo Alto.

West Bay Opera’s production of “Tosca” is scheduled Oct. 11-20 at the Lucie Stern Theatre in Palo Alto, with a preview set for Thursday.

A new production of Giacomo Puccini’s classic tale of passion, oppression and death, the opera premiered in 1900. It is based on a work by French playwright Victorien Sardou.

“The Tosca story is about what perfectly reasonable people will do when pushed to extremes by the circumstances,” said Jose Luis Moscovich, West Bay Opera’s general director and conductor. “It makes for great theater and even better opera. Puccini was a genius at making the stage sizzle with passion, whether it was love, lust, murder or, in this case, all of the above.”

Philip Skinner – who portrayed Iago in last season’s “Otello”– returns to West Bay Opera as Scarpia, Rome’s unscrupulous chief of police. Soprano Stacey Stofferahn performs the title role. The cast includes David Gustafson (as Mario Cavaradossi), Nadav Hart (Spoletta), William O’Neill (Angelotti), Carl King (the Sagrestano) and Matthew Pierce (Sciarrone).

“We have a cast that will deliver the goods,” Moscovich said. “People will be on the edge of their seats – even though they already know how it ends.”

Fully staged in the original Napoleonic period setting, “Tosca” features lavish costumes and video-enhanced sets.

This marks West Bay Opera’s sixth production of “Tosca.” It will be sung in Italian, with English titles from a new translation Moscovich prepared specifically for this production.

Performances are slated 8 p.m. Oct. 11, 2 p.m. Oct. 13 (followed by a post-performance discussion with the cast and directors), 8 p.m. Oct. 19 and 2 p.m. Oct. 20 at the Lucie Stern Theatre, 1305 Middlefield Road. A free preview with piano is set for 8 p.m. Thursday at Avenidas, 450 Bryant St., Palo Alto.

For tickets and more information, visit WBOpera.org.

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