The epic performance of Jake Heggie's opera Moby-Dick from the San Francisco Opera is now on DVD and Blueray disc. The release is part of a new partnership between the San Francisco Opera and EuroArts Music International, which will include six operas taped at the historic War Memorial Opera House.
The all-star cast includes barihunk Morgan Smith, Jay Hunter Morris, Stephen Costello, Jonathan Lemalu, Talise Trevigne and is conducted by Patrick Summers. Smith plays the critical role of Captain Ahab's first mate Starbuck, the first mate and family man who tries desperately to dissuade Ahab from his single-minded, suicidal pursuit of Moby-Dick. The role includes more beautiful baritone music from Jake Heggie in the aria "Captain Ahab? I must Speak with you." You can listen to a recording of the aria with piano on barihunk Randal Turner's site.
Heggie and Gene Scheer brilliantly adapted Herman Melville’s epic tale of a fierce, obsessive whaling-boat captain who descends into madness and puts his crew in mortal danger. The opera is already assured to be part of the operatic standard repertory, with every production receiving critical praise for the work. The opera was originally co-commissioned by the Dallas Opera, San Francisco Opera, San Diego Opera, State Opera of South Australia and the Calgary Opera and debuted on April 30, 2010.
The opera is 142 minutes, but the DVD includes and additional hour of extras including interviews with Morgan Smith, Jay Hunter Morris, Stephen Costello, Jonathan Lemalu, Talise Trevigne, Jake Heggie, Patrick Summers and Gene Scheer.
The opera will also be presented as part of PBS's Great Performances 40th anniversary season on November 1, 2013 at 9 PM. Check your local listings.
There are two upcoming live performances of the opera. The Fargo-Moorhead Opera will present free scenes from the opera on October 1, 2 and 3, 2013 with tenor David Hamilton, tenor Joshua Kohl, baritone Cory Renbarger and bass Ashraf Sewailam. The highly anticipated East Coast premiere of the opera will take place at the Kennedy Center with the Washington National Opera from February 22 - March 8, 2014. Starbuck will be sung by newlywed barihunk Matthew Worth and Queequeg by fellow barihunk Eric Greene. Tickets go on sale December 4, 2013 to the public and on November 25, 2013 to Kennedy Center members.