Opera Santa Barbara was founded in 1994 by Marilyn Gilbert and Nathan Rundlett with the goal of bringing the highest caliber of opera to Santa Barbara. Over the decades the organization has presented 48 operas and has provided thousands of hours of educational programs to the community. The quality of their productions has consistently improved, and they have established a solid base of opera lovers in Santa Barbara and Ventura counties.
Opera Santa Barbara contributes to the cultural enrichment of audiences by presenting exciting, high-quality productions and community programs that celebrate the breadth and beauty of opera.
Opera Santa Barbara aspires to be a destination opera company, producing a diverse repertoire of traditional and contemporary operas that engage and excite a broad audience.
Studio Artist Program
Opera Santa Barbara's Studio Artist Program provides high-level performance opportunities and valuable training to some of the country's most talented up-and-coming opera singers. These singers work with top industry directors, conductors, and coaches in masterclasses, individual coachings, and public performances including cover and mainstage role assignments. Going into only its seventh year, alumni have gone on to perform roles with companies around the world including the Metropolitan, Washington National, Santa Fe, Los Angeles, Pittsburgh, Dallas, Sarasota, Fort Worth, and Virginia Operas, and internationally with the Deutsche Oper Berlin, Opernhaus Zürich, Heidelberg Opera, Hong Kong Opera, Teatro Regio of Torino, Aix-en-Provence, Beijing's Reignwood Theater and Austria's Bregenzer Festspiele as well as appearances with the Chicago Symphony, Philadelphia, and Pittsburgh Orchestras, the Netherlands Radio Orchestra and the Opera Orchestra of New York.
Photos by David Bazemore