Mission & History 2017-07-20T15:30:45+00:00

Our Mission & History

“This midsize company has a welcome new tempo, new ambitions, and new capacities. It should be fascinating to see, as BLO approaches its 40th anniversary in 2017, where it goes from here.”
The Boston Globe, “Boston Lyric Opera renews its vision,” September 20, 2014

 

The mission of Boston Lyric Opera is to build curiosity, enthusiasm and support for opera by creating musically and theatrically compelling productions, events, and educational resources for the Boston community and beyond.

Both locally and beyond, Boston Lyric Opera leads the way in celebrating the art of the voice through innovative programming and community engagement initiatives that redefine the opera-going experience. Now in its 41st Season, BLO is the largest and longest-lived opera company in New England. Since its founding in 1976, the company has staged world premieres, U.S. premieres, co-productions and co-commissions of note with organizations such as The Royal Opera, Covent Garden and Scottish Opera, and continues to be a destination for some of the leading artists, conductors, directors and designers from around the world.

Under the vibrant leadership of Stanford Calderwood General & Artistic Director Esther Nelson, BLO’s productions have been described by Musical America magazine as “part of the national dialogue” because of their role as entry points for new audiences. The New York Times observed that BLO “clearly intends [its productions] to catch the interest of operagoers around the country.”

This view is shared by the nearly 25,000 people who experience BLO each year through dynamic performances, extensive partnerships with leading cultural organizations—like Museum of Fine Arts, Boston and Boston Public Library—and programs throughout our vastly diverse and exuberant community.

BLO’s programming remains faithful to tradition while blazing new ground, building audiences, and creating new ways to enhance the opera-going experience. Artists in our Jane & Steven Akin Emerging Artists initiative work to hone their craft and prepare themselves for other world-leading stages. BLO’s wide-reaching education initiatives introduce opera to new audiences across generations.

Through your support and attendance, BLO employs nearly 350 artists and creative professionals annually—vocalists, artisans, stagehands, costumers, and scenic designers—many of whom are members of our own community. The Company is proud to play a significant and meaningful role in Boston’s vibrant arts community.

 

 


Repertoire History

2016/17

Carmen, Bizet
OPERA ANNEX: Greek, Turnage
The Rake’s Progress, Stravinsky
The Marriage of Figaro, Mozart

2015/16

La Bohème, Puccini
OPERA ANNEX: In the Penal Colony, Philip Glass
Werther, Massenet
The Merry Widow, Lehár

2014/15

La Traviata, Verdi
OPERA ANNEX: The Love Potion, Martin
Kátya Kabanová, Janáček
Don Giovanni, Mozart

2013/14

The Magic Flute, Mozart
OPERA ANNEX: Lizzie Borden, Jack Beeson
Rigoletto, Verdi
I Puritani, Bellini

2012/13

Madama Butterfly, Puccini
OPERA ANNEX: Clemency, James MacMillan
Così Fan Tutte, Mozart
The Flying Dutchman, Wagner

2011/12

Macbeth, Verdi
OPERA ANNEX: The Lighthouse, Peter Maxwell Davies
The Barber of Seville, Rossini
The Inspector, John Musto

2010/11

Tosca, Puccini
OPERA ANNEX: The Emperor of Atlantis, or Death Quits, Ullmann
Agrippina, Handel
A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Britten
Hansel and Gretel, Humperdinck*

2009/10

Carmen, Bizet
OPERA ANNEX: The Turn of the Screw, Britten
Ariadne auf Naxos, R. Strauss
Idomeneo, re di Creta, Mozart
The Barber of Seville, Rossini*

2008/09

Les Contes d’Hoffmann, Offenbach
Rusalka, Dvořák
Don Giovanni, Mozart
The Magic Flute, Mozart*

2007/08

La Bohème, Puccini
L’Elisir d’Amore, Donizetti
The Abduction from the Seraglio, Mozart
Hansel and Gretel, Humperdinck*

2006/07

Madama Butterfly, Puccini
Un Ballo in Maschera, Verdi
Le Nozze di Figaro, Mozart
The Barber of Seville, Rossini*

2005/06

Lucie de Lammermoor, Donizetti
La Traviata, Verdi
Thaïs, Massenet
Daughter of the Regiment, Donizetti*

2004/05

L’Italiana in Algeri, Rossini
The Little Prince, Portman
Eugene Onegin, Tchaikovsky
Flight, Dove
The Magic Flute, Mozart*

2003/04

Rigoletto, Verdi
Tosca, Puccini
Così Fan Tutte, Mozart
Hansel and Gretel, Humperdinck*

2002/03

Carmen, Bizet
Il Barbiere di Siviglia, Rossini
The Abduction from the Seraglio, Mozart
La Rondine, Puccini
Die Fledermaus, Strauss
The Barber of Seville, Rossini*

2001/02

Don Carlos, Verdi
Resurrection, Machover
Don Pasquale, Donizetti
La Bohème, Puccini
Daughter of the Regiment, Donizetti*

2000/01

Madama Butterfly, Puccini
Don Giovanni, Mozart
Salome, Strauss
The Daughter of the Regiment, Donizetti
The Magic Flute, Mozart*

1999/00

Aïda, Verdi
Akhnaten, Glass
Die Zauberflöte, Mozart
Jumping Frog of Calaveras County, Foss*

1998/99

La Traviata, Verdi
Roméo et Juliette, Gounod
Le Nozze di Figaro, Mozart

1997/98

Deborah Voigt in concert
Lucia di Lammermoor, Donizetti
The Ballad of Baby Doe, Moore
Werther, Massenet

1996/97

Tosca, Puccini
The Shepherd King, Mozart
L’Elisir d’Amore, Donizetti

1995/96

Faust, Gounod
Falstaff, Verdi
Xerxes, Handel

1994/95

Rigoletto, Verdi
Il Barbiere di Siviglia, Rossini
Candide, Bernstein

1993/94

I Puritani, Bellini
Carmen, Bizet
The Postman Always Rings Twice, Paulus

1992/93

La Bohème, Puccini
Beatrice and Benedict, Berlioz
Wuthering Heights, Floyd

1991/92

La Cenerentola, Rossini
Lost in the Stars, Weill
The Tales of Hoffman, Offenbach

1990/91

The Daughter of the Regiment, Donizetti
Ariadne auf Naxos, Strauss
Regina, Blitzstein

1989/90

Tosca, Puccini
The Flying Dutchman, Wagner
La Traviata, Verdi

1988/89

The Portrait of Manon, Massenet
Thérèse, Massenet
Dialogues des Carmélites, Poulenc

1987/88

Maria Stuarda, Donizetti
The Turn of the Screw, Britten

1986/87

Rigoletto, Verdi
The Rake’s Progress, Stravinsky

1985/86

Agrippina, Handel
Façade, Walton
La Voix Humaine, Poulenc
The Barber of Seville, Rossini

1984/85

First the Music, Then the Words, Salieri
The Impresario, Mozart

1982/83

Ariadne auf Naxos, Strauss
Il Trovatore, Verdi
Madama Butterfly, Puccini

1982/83

Der Ring des Nibelungen, Wagner

1981/82

Norma, Bellini
The Abduction form the Seraglio, Mozart
Werther, Massenet

1980/81

Amahl and the Night Visitors, Menotti
La Clemenza di Tito, Mozart
The Consul, Menotti
The Coronation of Poppea, Monteverdi

1979/80

King for a Day, Verdi

1977/78

Zaïde, Mozart

*BLO’s Opera for Young Audiences (OYA) – an annual production performed in English in one hour, fully staged, for Metro Boston families and New England schoolchildren.