The second largest opera company in North America, San Francisco Opera has been a leader among international opera companies for nine decades. The radio series brings these world-class performances to the airwaves, along with the occasional historic performance, with hosts Elaine Warner and Dianne Nicolini.
Since its inception, San Francisco Opera has embodied a spirit of innovation by presenting the world premieres of many works including A Streetcar Named Desire (1998), Dead Man Walking (2000), and Doctor Atomic (2005).
San Francisco Opera has presented the American debut performances of numerous artists, including Anna Netrebko, Tito Gobbi, Birgit Nilsson, Leontyne Price, Elisabeth Schwarzkopf, Renata Tebaldi, Valery Gergiev, Sir Georg Solti, and Francis Ford Coppola.
Founded by Gaetano Merola in 1923, the first performance (La bohème) took place on September 26, 1923 in the city’s Civic Auditorium. Nine years later, the company moved into its permanent home, inaugurating the newly built War Memorial Opera House with a performance of Tosca on October 15, 1932, with Claudia Muzio, Dino Borgioli, Alfredo Gandolfi, and Merola conducting. Since 2006 the company has been led by general director David Gockley.
For more information visit the San Francisco Opera website.
WFMT offers a complete opera every Saturday at noon with productions from the following companies:
- Metropolitan Opera (winter)
- Lyric Opera of Chicago (May-July)
- LA Opera on Air (July-August)
- San Francisco Opera (August-October)