And now, hear this: San Francisco Opera will simulcast Camille
Saint-Saens's "Samson and Delilah" (the Biblical story taking place in
Gaza and the Vale of Sorek) to the San Francisco Giants' AT&T Park. No
double-header this, the live telecast, featuring Clifton Forbis as Samson
and Olga Borodina as Delilah, will take place in the ballpark beginning
at 8 p.m., on Friday, Sept. 28.
There will be seating both on the field and in the stands, and the event
is free, but tickets must be reserved in advance for admission. Visit
the Opera website (www.sfopera.com) for information, beginning July 9.
Opera General Director David Gockley, who announced the event at a
home plate ceremony just prior to Monday night's Giants-Astros game
(4:0), is the former head of the Houston Grand Opera and - presumably -
a *former* Astros fan. He had initiated free outdoor simulcasts last
season, and he will now add free indoor multicasts as well, of Mozart's
"Don Giovanni" from the War Memorial on June 22. Beginning at 8 p.m.,
the performance will be seen simultaneously in Cal Performances' Zellerbach
Hall, Mondavi Center in Davis, and the Ruth Finley Person Theater in
These simulcasts are the first to utilize the Opera's new Koret Media
Suite, a high-definition video production facility installed on the fifth
floor of the Opera House. A grant from the Koret Foundation provided
lead funding for this initiative, with additional support provided by
Tad and Dianne Taube, and Charles Schwab & Company. The media suite
represents the first permanent high-definition broadcast-standard
facilities installed in an American opera house.
The simulcast will be transmitted in 1920x1080 HD via satellite to the
three venues live from the Opera House, where a seven-camera shoot will
be directed by Frank Zamacona, director of the company's simulcast of
"Rigoletto" last fall of 2006. The media suite utilizes Sony cameras
and Cambotics robotics, which are operated by two robotic operators
using remote control technology in the media control room.
Free live simulcasts are among the first innovations of Gockley's
16-month-long tenure, and part of the company's campaign to bring
opera into the community and to wider audiences. The June 22 simulcasts
are free, but tickets are required; contact each venue directly: Cal
Performances at (510) 642-9988 after June 4, Mondavi Center at (530)
754-2787 after May 23, and Santa Rose at (707) 546-3600, available now.
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