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Rafael Helbig-Kostka returns to Opera Theatre of St Louis in 2017 as a Second Year Gerdine Young Artist.

His responsibilities as a Young Artist include:

  • Singing the role of Deputy in Ricky Ian Gordon's "The Grapes of Wrath."
  • Covering the role of Titus in their production of Mozart's "Titus" (La Clemenza di Tito)
  • Covering the role of Titorelli/Flogger/Student in their production of Glass' "The Trial."
  • Participating in the annual Center Stage concert. 
  • Singing in the choruses of Madama Butterly, Titus, and Grapes of Wrath.

Opera Theatre Announces its 2017 Festival Season
May 20 – June 25

Opera Theatre is excited to share details about the upcoming 2017 season! We hope you’ll join us to experience two bold works from living American composers, in addition to two timeless classics from opera’s most beloved composers. And, as always, we’ll be offering our annual Center Stage concert to highlight the incredible talents of our Gaddes Festival Artists and Gerdine Young Artists.


Giacomo Puccini
Conducted by Michael Christie | Directed by Robin Guarino
May 20, 26, June 1, 3, 7, 11, 14, 24

An innocent young Japanese girl meets a foreign officer, and the attraction is immediate. But when a hasty union results in a child, Cio-Cio-San must choose between fighting for Lieutenant Pinkerton or protecting her son’s future. This timeless opera pays a powerful, wrenching tribute to a mother’s love. Soprano Rena Harms* makes an important OTSL debut in the title role, joined by tenor Michael Brandenburg* (Pinkerton) and baritone Christopher Magiera (Sharpless).


Premiere of a New Performing Version
Ricky Ian Gordon & Michael Korie

Conducted by Christopher Allen | Directed by James Robinson

May 27, 31, June 9, 15, 17, 21, 25

When the Dust Bowl sweeps across 1930s Oklahoma, the Joad family sets out for a new life in California. But the promised land isn’t all it seems. In the face of countless obstacles, can the American dream survive? Ricky Ian Gordon’s acclaimed opera vividly captures one family’s fight to endure with all the poetic beauty of John Steinbeck’s original novel. Baritone Tobias Greenhalgh° is Tom Joad, with sopranos Deanna Breiwick as Rosasharn and Katharine Goeldner as Ma Joad.


American Premiere
Philip Glass & Christopher Hampton

Conducted by Carolyn Kuan | Directed by Michael McCarthy

June 4, 8, 10, 17, 21, 23

On his 30th birthday, Joseph K. is arrested…but no one will tell him why. He embarks on a year-long search for justice, encountering absurd characters and madcap situations at every turn. Based on the celebrated novel by Franz Kafka, this dark comedy comes to St. Louis from Music Theatre Wales after a sold-out run at London’s Royal Opera House, in a co-production with ROH, Scottish Opera, and Theater Magdeburg. Baritone Theo Hoffman° plays the embattled Joseph K., joined by soprano Susannah Biller and mezzo-soprano Maria Zifchak.


Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
Conducted by Stephen Lord | Directed by Stephen Lawless
June 10, 14, 16, 18, 22, 24

Politics turn lethal as a new emperor takes the throne of Rome, and the Capitol is set ablaze by an explosive mix of ambition, conspiracy, and romantic intrigue. Can a leader rule the world’s most powerful city with compassion? This Mozart masterpiece, led by conductor Stephen Lord in his final appearance as OTSL Music Director, features a stellar ensemble cast, led by tenor René Barbera (Tito), soprano Laura Wilde° (Vitellia), and mezzo-soprano Cecelia Hall° (Sesto).


One Night Only!
June 20

This one-night-only concert brings Opera Theatre’s Richard Gaddes Festival Artists and Gerdine Young Artists into the spotlight to sing iconic moments from opera’s greatest hits and cherished rarities. Be among the first to discover the next generation of opera stars, accompanied onstage by members of the brilliant St. Louis Symphony.