OPERA San Antonio opens its 2022-2023 season with the famous tragic opera Pagliacci | Things to do | San Antonio


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Courtesy photo / OPERA San Antonio

Jonathan Burton stars as Canio in OSA’s production of Pagliacci.

“But doctor, I am Pagliacci! – or so the punchline goes.

Although the “depressed clown” joke predates Ruggero Leoncavallo’s 1892 opera, after Pagliacci entered the zeitgeist as “that story with the sad clowns”, the joke ended up using its title.

In the opera, Canio, the leader of a traveling troupe of actors, suspects his wife Nedda of infidelity. Although she rejects the advances of the lover Tonio, Nedda does have a lover: Silvio.

And, as it turns out, the commedia troupe’s current production stars Canio as Pagliaccio, a character who suspects his wife Colombina — played by Nedda — of infidelity. Sound familiar?

During the troupe’s show, fiction and truth merge, and Canio as Pagliaccio is overwhelmed with jealousy, culminating in tragedy on stage.

OPERA San Antonio opens its 2022-2023 season with the acclaimed two-act opera, directed by OSA Artistic Advisor Garnett Bruce, under the musical direction of Francesco Milioto. The production stars Jonathan Burton as Canio, Sara Gartland as Nedda, Ricardo Jose Rivera as Silvio and Gordon Hawkins as Tonio.

“This short opera really packs a punch,” Milioto said in a statement. “The audience is immediately drawn into the drama as if they are part of the watching crowd on stage.”

Pagliacci will be performed in Italian with English translations, and each performance will feature an educational pre-show lecture.

$40-$195, 7 p.m. Thursday, November 3, 7:30 p.m. Saturday, November 5, Tobin Center for the Performing Arts, 100 Circle Auditorium, (210) 223-8624, tobincenter.org.

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