Music by Antonín Dvořák


Limited inventory remains—Buy now to secure your seats!


What would you do if the only thing keeping you from your lover was everything?


Based on the same story that inspired The Little Mermaid, Rusalka is a heartbreaking tale of love and sacrifice. This operatic fantasy looks beyond the storybook world of happily-ever-after to expose truths that are powerfully and painfully human.

Production New to San Francisco Opera

Meet the Cast

Libretto by Jaroslav Kvapil

Sung in Czech with English supertitles


Shadowy, fairy-tale ‘Rusalka’ is SF Opera at its best

— San Francisco Chronicle

Rusalka is a triumph in all ways

– San Francisco Classical Voice

A superb cast, a thoughtful and visually striking production, first-rate work from the orchestra pit

– San Francisco Chronicle

Presiding over everything, in a company debut of astonishing vibrancy and assurance, was conductor Eun Sun Kim

– San Francisco Chronicle

In the title role, soprano Rachel Willis-Sørensen gave a performance of heroic power and tenderness

– San Francisco Chronicle

Tenor Brandon Jovanovich gave … exquisitely shaped vocal phrases

– San Francisco Chronicle

[Jamie] Barton vocally soared and was spellbinding

– The San Francisco Examiner




Program Articles

Finding the Way to Rusalka

Having reached his late fifties, Antonín Dvořák refused to be the kind of aging man that William Butler Yeats would lament as “a paltry thing, a tattered coat upon a stick.” Like Yeats, Dvořák knew time could condemn anyone to irrelevance. Read more.

Rusalka in the New World

Throughout his American sojourn (1892–1895) as director of the National Conservatory of Music in New York City, Czech composer Antonín Dvořák longed for his native Bohemia and channeled his homesickness into some of his most poignant and emotionally stirring music... Read more.

Czech, Please! An Interview with Radoslava Biancalana

In Prague today, one may stumble upon streets so quiet that you can hear your own voice at a whisper. Read more.


A water nymph's wish to be human carries a high price for her and the prince she loves.


Read Complete Synopsis >


Cast and Creative

Rusalka Rachel Willis‐Sørensen
The Prince Brandon Jovanovich
Vodník (Water Goblin) Kristinn Sigmundsson
Ježibaba Jamie Barton
Foreign Princess Sarah Cambidge
First Wood Nymph Natalie Image
Second Wood Nymph Simone McIntosh
Third Wood Nymph Ashley Dixon
Forester Philip Horst
Kitchen Boy Laura Krumm
Hunter Andrew Manea
Solo Dancer Rachel Speidel Little
Solo Dancer Christopher Nachtrab


June 16, 19, 22, 25, 28, 2019

Conductor Eun Sun Kim *
Production David McVicar
Revival Stage Director Leah Hausman
Set Designer John Macfarlane
Costume Designer Moritz Junge
Lighting Designer David Finn
Choreographer Andrew George
Chorus Director Ian Robertson

*  San Francisco Opera debut

A production of Lyric Opera of Chicago.


Previous performance of Rusalka can be found in our Archive


The Carol Franc Buck Foundation; John A. and Cynthia Fry Gunn; and Jan Shrem & Maria Manetti Shrem, through the Emerging Stars Fund; and Joan & David Traitel, through the Great Singers Fund; and Chevron.


You May Also Enjoy


Live and In Concert: The Homecoming

September 10th, 2021



October 14-30, 2021

Così fan tutte

Così fan tutte

November 21 - December 3, 2021