Who's Gonna Love it

Fans of Pentatonix, World Music lovers, or anyone who has ever planned a wedding.

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Eat, drink and be married! A Serbian bride-to-be and her friends prepare for her wedding day in this exuberant a cappella opera. Michael Cavanagh directs a new SF Opera Lab production of Ana Sokolović's "compelling and beautifully transparent" score (Opera News) led by co-music directors Dáirine Ní Mheadhra and John Hess. And you're invited to the after-party!



"Luminous.... Svadba-Wedding is a perfect match for SF Opera Lab!"
San Jose Mercury News

"Girls just want to have fun! It's a delightful and moving chamber opera."
San Francisco Examiner

"It would be hard to imagine a more committed or inviting performance.... Their singing, conducted by Dáirine Ní Mheadhra, was bright, full-textured and keenly blended."
San Francisco Chronicle

"The women use their voices individually and in unison, producing murmurs, clicks, trills and swoops, long melodic phrases and short rhythmic outbursts. It's an astonishing vocabulary of sound and tone."
San Jose Mercury News

"In seven scenes, they dance, drink, fix the bride's hair, play party games, offer advice—some of it welcome, some not—and consider the implications of the impending union. Composer Ana Sokolović sets these activities to a remarkable score."
San Jose Mercury News

Cast and Creative

Milica Jacqueline Woodley
Danica Liesbeth Devos
Lena Laura Albino
Zora Pauline Sikirdji
Nada Andrea Ludwig
Ljubica Krisztina Szabó
Stage Direction Michael Cavanagh
Co-Music Direction and Conductor Dáirine Ní Mheadhra *
Co-Music Direction John Hess
Projection, Set and Lighting Design Alexander V. Nichols
Costume Design Kristi Johnson



Svadba-Wedding, composed by Montreal based Ana Sokolović, is a virtuosic a cappella tour de force for six female opera singers. Sung in Serbian, the action takes place the night before a wedding when the bride-to-be parties all night with her best friends. They engage in raucous girl-talk, invoking pagan rituals as they celebrate their last night as unmarried friends while preparing her for the impending marriage.

Using existing Slavic/Balkan folk tales and myths as her text source, Ana Sokolović uses a newly invented fantasy language for the opera. What elevates this girl-talk to a supernaturally intoxicating experience is her style of composition. Drawing on her native Balkan folk music as a source of inspiration for her music, the singers have to use all possible variations for the voice—opera singing with Balkan folk voice, overtones, extreme chest voice, heightened nasal voice, whispering and rhythmic riffs, creating a wildly onomatopoeic palette of colors and sounds. The experience is unforgettable, an immersion in a world of ravishing and seductive sensations.

Made Possible By

This production is made possible, in part, by Dianne and Tad Taube.
Additional support is provided by Jessica Jacob.