Houston’s Nicole Heaston makes San Francisco Opera debut in Mozart’s “Figaro”

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Praised by the Houston Chronicle for her “warm supple soprano” and by the New York Times for her “radiant” and “handsomely resonant voice,” soprano Nicole Heaston has appeared with opera companies throughout the world, including the Metropolitan Opera, Houston Grand Opera, San Francisco Opera, Dallas Opera, Washington National Opera, Los Angeles Opera, Semperoper Dresden, Deutsche Oper am Rhein in Düsseldorf, and the Glyndebourne Festival in England.

Heaston makes her San Francisco Opera debut in The Marriage of Figaro alongside Michael Sumuel in the leading role.

The Marriage of Figaro had its world premiere in Vienna in 1786 and was the first of the three collaborations by Mozart and Da Ponte. Based on the revolutionary French play by Beaumarchais, the opera features humanist themes, comic situations and a brilliant, tuneful score that continues to move audiences centuries after the first performance. The Marriage of Figaro is in the repertory of nearly every opera company and was the first of Mozart’s works to be staged by San Francisco Opera (1936).

Canadian director Michael Cavanagh, sets The Marriage of Figaro around the time of the opera’s composition, relocating Count Almaviva’s palace in Seville to early America. He said, “The Marriage of Figaro is all about new beginnings. Our production takes place at the heart of a post-revolutionary America, a world of vast possibility for some, but great resentment and resistance for others. The setting is a house and a nation under construction, representing a hopeful future in which people strive to express their individual freedom within a framework of responsibility to each other.”

Mozart’s “The Marriage of Figaro” at the San Francisco Opera with Michael Sumuel (standing) as Figaro, Nicole Heaston (seated right) as Countess Almaviva and Jeanine De Bique (seated left) as Susanna, Figaro’s love and bride-to-be

Michael Sumuel stars in San Francisco Opera’s “The Marriage of Figaro”

American bass-baritone Michael Sumuel made his San Francisco Opera debut in 2011. After turns as Escamillo in Bizet’s Carmen and Masetto in Mozart’s Don Giovanni, he returns to take on the role of Figaro, the clever servant who must outmaneuver the nobleman of the house before marrying his love.

Heaston, as the Countess, a role she has performed around the world, including at Paris’ Théâtre des Champs-Elysées, Norwegian Opera, Hungarian National Opera and Boston Lyric Opera. The Boston Globe proclaimed her “a radiant Countess, her warm voice carrying hints of wisdom, mischief and sorrow.”   Learn more about HEASTON at

Details about the San Francisco Opera here,


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