Photo credit: Drew Altizer Photography
It was an evening of fun, fashion and French sophistication as fans celebrated the San Francisco Opera’s 94th season and an opening night performance of Umberto Giordano’s French Revolution-era opera, Andrea Chenier.
Two celebrations simultaneously took place at War Memorial Opera House the as the BRAVO! Club hosted their annual Opera Gala and The Opera Guild hosted its annual Opera Ball. Opening night is known as the most glamourous event of the year for opera fans and the evening didn’t disappoint as guests came dressed in their very best black-tie attire and the grounds of the brilliantly designed Beaux Arts-inspired Opera House provided the perfect Parisian atmosphere for the occasion.
The BRAVO! Gala began the evening with a pre-performance reception on the Opera House Loggia where guests sipped champagne and nibbled on hors d’ oeuvres while mingling and posing for photos. Opera Ball guests enjoyed their own elegant cocktail reception, as well as a catered dinner inside of a tented pavilion just outside of the Opera House. Following the pre-performance festivities, guests were treated to a rousing performance of Andrea Chenier, Giordano’s French Revolution-era opera.
The performance marked Matthew Shilvock’s inaugural year as San Francisco Opera’s new general director; taking over the reins from respected impresario David Gockley who had served in the position since 2006. It was a rousing rendition of an opera classic and was met with praise from the audience, proving to be the perfect choice for opening night. Following the performance, Gala guests continued the celebration at an after party in the Veteran Building’s Green Room, while the Opera Ball guests danced the night away at their own after party in the pavilion. It was a magical night not soon to be forgotten for all who attended and proceeds from the event will benefit the San Francisco Opera Association as well as opera centered education and community programs.