The Santa Fe Opera
Santa Fe NM
“If I cannot be his, I’ll let the grave be my wedding-bed.”
Charles Gounod was a master of graceful melody, French elegance and superb musical craft. But in the lush tunefulness of Roméo et Juliette we hear something more: the sound of youth and of overwhelming love. Gounod's music makes the heart leap and the rest of the world seem to disappear as he immerses us in one of the greatest of all romances. As the opera opens, Juliette's exuberant “Waltz Song” displays her alluring femininity, while Roméo is the model of moody, masculine impetuosity. But their shared love matures them both, and their intense duets convey a deepening commitment that transcends their ages and their families’ petty quarrels. The rising young soprano Ailyn Pérez, who captivated as Gounod’s Marguerite in Faust (2011), sings Juliette; tenor Stephen Costello debuts as Roméo. Elliot Madore makes his first Santa Fe appearance as Mercutio. Emily Fons, last heard in Cold Mountain (2015), portrays Roméo’s page, Stéphano (July 16 - August 16). Chief Conductor Harry Bicket takes the podium. The stage director is Stephen Lawless, who directed the Opera’s compelling 2011 production of Faust.