Category: Opera

The Elixir of Love – San Diego OperaTalk!

In this episode of OperaTalk, Dr. Nicolas Reveles discusses Gaetano Donizetti’s comedic opera “The Elixir of Love” or “L’elisir d’amore,” in which a con artist convinces villagers that a bottle of wine is a love potion.

What better place to discus the powerful effects of wine than at a winery? Reveles visits the beautiful Hacienda de las Rosas Winery to illustrate just how enchanting wine can be.

Donizetti had written hit operas before, including “Anna Bolena,” an historic opera about one of King Henry the 8th’s wives. But Reveles says that none came close to the success of “The Elixir of Love.”

Donizetti was in the midst of writing four operas in one year when he was commissioned to write a new one for the Teatro Cane Bianco in Milan. He wrote “The Elixir of Love” in just six weeks and it gained such popularity, it was the most performed opera in Italy between 1838 and 1848.

Learn more about this classic opera in “The Elixir of Love-San Diego OperaTalk.”

Check out other programs in the San Diego OperaTalk series!

Lear on the 2nd Floor

Composer Anthony Davis presents a modern take on Shakespeare’s classic, King Lear.

Lear on the 2nd Floor tells the story of Nora Lear, a neuroscience researcher suffering from early-onset Alzheimer’s. As Nora loses her bearings and autonomy, she is increasingly at the mercy of her three quarreling daughters. In this version, Nora’s dead husband Mortimer is Shakespeare’s fool and her constant companion, as she wanders through a world where past and present blend and reality bends.

Davis’s music incorporates diverse styles and influences, ranging from classical opera to jazz to reggae. This performance by UC San Diego’s Kallisti Vocal Ensemble includes various music styles from classical opera to reggae, as well as a libretto by playwright Allan Havis.

Check out our other chamber music videos.

Indulge in ‘Aida’

Verdi’s evergreen favorite “Aida” returns to San Diego Opera this weekend in a production designed by fashion icon Zandra Rhodes.

Get a look behind the scenes as cast and crew prepare to mount the grandest of grand operas with UCSD-TV’s “Opera Spotlight,” premiering tonight (April 19) at 9pm. (The video will be available online April 22 at this link, where additional broadcast dates and times are also available.)

How about getting to know the production’s cast and creative team, including Ms. Rhodes? Just watch “Stars in the Salon,” featuring a lively panel discussion hosted by Nick Reveles.

Or perhaps you need a primer on the opera which many consider to be Verdi’s greatest work? If so, watch “OperaTalk! with Nick Reveles.”

Now how’s that for operatic indulgence?

Who’s Behind That ‘Murder in the Cathedral?’

This week, San Diego Opera is busy is preparing for a murder, set to take place Saturday night when their production of  Ildebrando Pizzetti’s “Murder in the Cathedral” takes the stage. Based upon the drama by American poet TS Eliot, the story revolves around the 1170 murder of Archbishop Thomas Becket by henchmen of King Henry II in Canterbury Cathedral.

In UCSD-TV’s presentation of “Stars in the Salon,” premiering tonight (Marchy 26) at 8pm and online now, host Nick Reveles joins the cast and artistic team behind the new San Diego Opera production to discuss the intricacies of this unjustly-negelected masterwork.

Then check out “OperaTalk!” where host Nick Reveles provides a guided historical tour of the work, including its basis in Eliot’s play, the development of musical themes, and Pizzetti’s melding of words and music for maximum dramatic effect.

Before you head to the theater to enjoy the show, make sure to tune in Friday, March 29 at 9pm for the premiere of UCSD-TV’s behind-the-scenes documentary, “Opera Spotlight.”

Want to catch up on San Diego Opera’s season so far? Check out our Opera video archive!

Bronze Bling for UCSD-TV

We needed needed a little more bling around here!

After a terrific showing at the Aurora Awards, UCSD-TV is adding to its 2013 tally with two bronze Telly Awards.

“Building It Better: Earthquake-Resilient Hospitals for the Future” nabbed the bronze in the Documentary category for its behind-the-scenes look at the rigorous earthquake testing UC San Diego researchers put their five-story mockup of a hospital through in order to better understand how the many complex systems within hospital buildings perform after earthquakes. Produced by UCSD-TV’s Rich Wargo, in partnership with the California Seismic Safety Commission, the program explores the history of seismic safety for California’s hospital infrastructure, and what is being done to secure its future.

Also taking home the bronze for documentary was “San Diego Opera Spotlight: Moby-Dick,” UCSD-TV producer John Menier’s in-depth look behind-the-scenes at the West Coast premiere of Jake Heggie’s “Moby-Dick,” based upon the classic novel by Herman Melville.

You also might recall our announcement last month that “The Skinny on Obesity: Sickeningly Sweet” was awarded the prestigious Silver Telly Award in the Health and Wellness category. Produced by UCSD-TV’s Rich Wargo and Jennifer Ford, the program is one of seven episodes in the popular “The Skinny on Obesity” series, which premiered on the UCTV Prime YouTube original channel in April 2012.

The Telly Awards is the premier award honoring the finest film and video productions, groundbreaking web commercials, videos and films, and outstanding local, regional, and cable TV commercials and programs.

Congratulations to the UCSD-TV team!