La Traviata
Giuseppe Verdi
April 25, May 3m, & 9, 2015

Opening the Bass Hall season will be Verdi's masterpiece La Traviata. Based on La Dame aux camellias by Alexander Dumas, fis, and renowned for its unforgettable melodies, this timeless love story will play out against Verdi's rich orchestration and features a cast of fresh faces all making their FWOpera debuts in this traditionally staged production. Although deeply in love, the beautiful but frail Violetta Valéry—sung by Australian rising star Rachelle Durkin—resigns her passionate affair with Alfredo Germont – portrayed by Patrick O'Halloran—to maintain his family's respected name. Rounding out the leading roles is Nicholas Pallesen as Alfredo's father, Giorgo Germont.

FWOpera favorite David Gately (Ariadne auf Naxos and Così fan tutte) will direct, while FWOpera's Music Director Joe Illick conducts the Fort Worth Symphony Orchestra. La Traviata will also include lighting design by Fort Worth native Chad R. Jung and set and costumes by Desmond Heeley, originally designed for the Lyric Opera of Chicago.

Dog Days
David T. Little | Royce Vavrek | Judy Budnitz
April 24, 26m, 28, 29, May 1 & 2m, 2015

Fort Worth Opera will emphasize its commitment to contemporary works by launching the 2015 season with the revolutionary new opera Dog Days, by David T. Little and Royce Vavrek, in the intimate setting of the Scott Theatre at the Fort Worth Community Arts Center (1300 Gendy Street, Fort Worth, Texas). Based on the powerful short story of the same name by Judy Budnitz, the opera depicts the harrowing saga of an American family in a post-apocalyptic world. Facing imminent starvation and struggling to retain their dignity, the family is put to the ultimate test of humanity when a man appears at their home dressed as a dog and begging for scraps. Sure to be one of the most raw and affecting pieces to ever take the Fort Worth Opera stage, Dog Days has been described as "a punch in the stomach," and "one of the most exciting operas in recent years" by The Wall Street Journal.

Having made its world premiere in 2012, FWOpera, in partnership with Beth Morrison Projects, will present this pivotal work with its original cast, set, and orchestra including 2014 Tony Award nominated actress Lauren Worsham as Lisa, John Kelly as the Dog, and David T. Little's very own new music ensemble NEWSPEAK, in its first mounting since the opera's world premiere.

Robert Woodruff will direct the production with conductor Alan Pierson leading NEWSPEAK through Little's riveting and tuneful score. Set and video designer Jim Findlay, costume designer Victoria "Vita" Tzykun, and lighting designer Christopher Kuhl complete the creative team. The production was originally commissioned and produced by Peak Performances at Monclair (NJ) in association with Beth Morrison Projects. The 2015 remount is produced by Beth Morrison Projects and presented by Fort Worth Opera.

Dog Days

Composed by David T. Little| Libretto by Royce Vavrek

Based on the short story "Dog Days" by Judy Budnitz

Directed by Robert Woodruff

Music Direction by Alan Pierson

Commissioned by Montclair Peak Performances

World-premiere production produced by Peak Performances @ Montclair State University (NJ) in association with Beth Morrison Projects

Tour produced by Beth Morrison Projects

Ambroise Thomas
May 2 & May 10m, 2015

The 2015 Bass Hall series concludes with the regional premiere of Ambroise Thomas' riveting retelling of Shakespeare's Hamlet. From the moment guests enter Bass Hall, they will be catapulted into the haunting world of intrigue and vengeance with a set recalling images of a stark Soviet-era city. This mesmerizing production will welcome baritone Wes Mason (Before Night Falls and La Bohème) back to FWOpera in the title role, while Kim Joesphson (Falstaff) will portray the lecherous Claudius. Robynne Redmon (Dead Man Walking and Madama Butterfly) will appear as Gertrude, and Talise Trevigne will take on the challenging role of Ophelia in her FWOpera debut, following her success in Jake Heggie's monumental Moby Dick with the Dallas Opera.

Conductor Joe Illick will return to the podium to lead the orchestra through Thomas' emotive score, and acclaimed director Thaddeus Strassburger will make his Festival debut. Lighting designer Chad R. Jung, and costume designer Mary Traylor round out the creative team.