Cavalleria Rusticana / Pagliacci

Music by Pietro Mascagni and Ruggero Leoncavallo


In a close-knit community, secret loves lead to fateful consequences.

For the first time in 15 years, Cavalleria Rusticana and Pagliacci return in a gripping double feature seething with the raw passion, jealousy and heartbreak that can only result from a scandalous, small-town affair.

Production New to San Francisco Opera

Meet the Cast

Libretti by Giovanni Targioni-Tozzetti and Guido Menasci & Ruggero Leoncavallo

Sung in Italian with English supertitles



Pre-Opera Talks

Free to Ticketholders

For every performance, join us in the Orchestra section 55 minutes prior to curtain.

The Expert: Robert Hartwell

Learn about the opera’s music, characters, composer and historical background.

Watch the Video

Did you miss the Pre-Opera Talk? You can watch the video here.


Cav/Pag … was an absolutely splendid display of vocal and theatrical sorcery, the kind of undertaking that leaves you eager to hear what else the company has lined up for this season.

San Francisco Chronicle

The singing from two distinct but intertwined casts was first-rate across the board.

San Francisco Chronicle


Romantic infidelity turns to tragedy for villagers and members of a small theater troupe.

Read Complete Synopsis ›


Cast and Creative

Turiddu Roberto Aronica
Santuzza Ekaterina Semenchuk
Alfio Dimitri Platanias *
Lola Laura Krumm
Mamma Lucia Jill Grove
Canio Marco Berti
Nedda Lianna Haroutounian
Tonio Dimitri Platanias *
Silvio David Pershall
Beppe Amitai Pati


September 7, 12, 16, 19, 22, 28, 30, 2018

Conductor Daniele Callegari *
Production José Cura *
Revival Director Jose Maria Condemi
Set Designer José Cura *
Costume Designer Fernand Ruiz *
Original Lighting Designer Olivier Wéry *
Revival Lighting Designer Justin Partier
Fight Director Dave Maier
Chorus Director Ian Robertson
Choreographer Lawrence Pech

* San Francisco Opera debut

An Opéra Royal de Wallonie-Liège production.


Previous performances of Cavalleria Rusticana and Pagliacci can be found in our Archive.


Cav Pag Set


Director's Note

For Argentine director José Cura, the Italian Quarter of Buenos Aires was a natural fit for the double bill.

Testimonies of Passion and Pride

Learn more about Cavalleria Rusticana and Pagliacci in San Francisco.

True South: The Italianissimo Cavalleria Rusticana and Pagliacci

Cavalleria Rusticana and Pagliacci are quintessentially southern Italian, writes author Fred Plotkin.


Opening Weekend Grand Sponsor Diane B. Wilsey. Additional support is provided by: John A. and Cynthia Fry Gunn; The Diana Dollar Knowles Foundation; the Edmund W. and Jeannik Méquet Littlefield Fund; Meyer Sound; and Jan Shrem and Maria Manetti Shrem, through the Conductors Fund and the Great Interpreters of Italian Opera Fund; and Joan & David Traitel, through the Great Singers Fund.


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Photo (top): Opéra Royal de Wallonie production of Cavalleria Rusticana and Pagliacci/Jacques Croisier.