Recently performed at the 2013 Festival, Toshio Hosokawa’s ethereal new opera Matsukaze opens today at Lincoln Center Festival in New York City and we couldn’t be prouder.

Read a review here.

Many productions come and go through the diverse Festival program each season, but opera, or shall we say a Spoleto Festival USA opera, is different. What many people don’t realize is that the festival has produced every detail of its opera productions – from hiring world renowned directors, conductors, and singers to building elaborate sets and costumes – for more than 35 years. It distinguishes Spoleto from other arts festivals that present programs made up of pre-packaged productions and serves as the Festival’s calling card for national music critics. Opera has been a part of Spoleto’s DNA from the very beginning thanks to Founder and Pulitzer Prize-winning opera composer Gian Carlo Menotti.

(Set pieces, including the tree made entirely of plastic tubing and zip ties, are disassembled at Dock Street Theatre and shipped to New York City.)

Menotti invented this unique festival model with opera at its core. It has been described as the glue that holds the rest of the program together. The ultimate goal of the Spoleto opera is to create a synergy between the different performing art forms – experiencing opera makes a contemporary dance performance or the one-man show that much richer. General Director Nigel Redden recently compared Spoleto to a “delicious feast of hors d’oeuvres, main courses, and excellent wines.” We couldn’t agree more and can’t wait for next season’s tasty treats.

To learn more about Lincoln Center Festival’s presentation of Matsukaze, click here.

All images by Julia Lynn.