Don Carlo

At the time of Spain’s brutal Inquisition, the king of Spain marries the woman his son loves and sets into motion a tension-filled chain of events. Don’t miss this magnificent tale of romantic triangles, political idealism and life-and-death devotion.

Music by Giuseppe Verdi | Libretto by Joseph Méry and Camille du Locle

Sung in Italian with English supertitles 


Vocally triumphant!

San Francisco Chronicle

Michael Fabiano is nothing short of magnificent.

The Mercury News

Ana María Martínez sums up all the character's nobility and emotional conflict in a shimmery, expansive vocal line.

San Francisco Chronicle

Mariusz Kwiecień was a vocal powerhouse, both muscular and elegant.

San Francisco Chronicle

René Pape sang with dark, magisterial tone and made the king a commanding, intriguingly complex character.

The Mercury News

With its intricate, masterful blend of personal passion and political intrigue, Don Carlo requires superb music direction, cogent staging and a cast with big, gorgeous voices and unflagging stamina. This production has them all.

The Mercury News

Music Director Nicola Luisotti conducts with emotional fervor and inexorable pacing with an outstanding cast that brought the opera’s arias, duets and ensembles to life with vibrant energy and theatrical verve.

The Mercury News

Michael Fabiano brought a combination of heroic heft and ringing tenor clarity to the title role. That Act 2 duet, in which he and Mariusz Kwiecień’s Rodrigo pledge their fraternal bond, was a stirring display of vocal expressivity.

San Francisco Chronicle

Nadia Krasteva made a splendid Company debut as Princess Eboli, singing in throaty colors and just enough wildness to suggest the character’s unpredictable nature.

San Francisco Chronicle

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Under the shadow of the Spanish Inquisition, the king of Spain marries the woman his son loves.

Read Complete Synopsis ›

Cast & Creative

Don Carlo Michael Fabiano
Elisabetta Ana María Martínez
Princess Eboli Nadia Krasteva *
Rodrigo Mariusz Kwiecien
Philip II René Pape
Philip II Ferruccio Furlanetto 1
The Grand Inquisitor Andrea Silvestrelli
A Monk Matthew Stump
Tebaldo Nian Wang
A Heavenly Voice Toni Marie Palmertree*
Count Lerma Pene Pati*


June 12, 15, 18, 21, 24, 29

Conductor Nicola Luisotti
Director Emilio Sagi
Designer Zack Brown
Lighting Designer Gary Marder
Chorus Director Ian Robertson
Fight Director Dave Maier

 * San Francisco Opera Debut 
1 June 29

San Francisco Opera production

Previous performances of Don Carlo can be found in our Archive.

Program Articles

Verdi at His Most Ambitious

It is just one of the many paradoxes surrounding Don Carlo that an opera seemingly grounded in a specific historical era speaks to contemporary audiences.

Music Director's Note

A night with Don Carlo is a long evening of joy and mystic revelations.

The Real People in Don Carlo

Historical characters, fascinating in their own right, lie at the heart of Verdi’s third-hand story. 

TV and Radio Broadcasts

Did you miss your favorite opera or want to relive a stunning performance? Check for upcoming broadcasts of our past performances.

Explore the Archive

Our complete history of operas, casts, production teams and performance details—dating back to 1923—at your fingertips.

Made Possible By

Company Sponsors John A. and Cynthia Fry Gunn are proud to support this production. This production is made possible, in part, by the Edmund W. and Jeannik Méquet Littlefield Fund and Thomas and Barbara Wolfe. Major support is also provided by the Great Interpreters of Italian Opera Fund established by Jan Shrem and Maria Manetti Shrem. Maestro Luisotti's appearance is made possible by the Jan Shrem and Maria Manetti Shrem Conductors Fund. Ms. Stoyanova’s and Mr. Kwiecień’s appearances are made possible by a gift to the Great Singers Fund from Joan and David Traitel.