First Coast Opera’s inaugural production at The Waterworks Opéra Mystique

  • by 904 Newsroom
  • January 19, 2023

St. Augustine, FL — Opéra Mystique is First Coast Opera’s inaugural production at The Waterworks, 184 San Marco  Ave., in uptown St. Augustine. This other-worldly program features staged performances of two short operas written and  performed in English — Gustav Holst’s Sāvitri and Gian Carlo Menotti’s The Medium, both offering poignant glimpses  into how people confront and react to death. Tickets are available at 

Opéra Mystique invokes mysticism and the afterlife to explore the idea that people believe what they want to believe.  Small casts and a small orchestra will offer uniquely-intimate experiences, both thought-provoking and dramatic.“We are thrilled to produce this production in The Waterworks, an intimate venue for these short opera programs,” said  Curtis Tucker, First Coast Opera Artistic Director, and orchestra conductor for Opéra Mystique. Returning stage director Helena Binder (Madama Butterfly, La Traviata) leads this production. 
In Sāvitri, Gustav Holst, composer of the popular orchestral suite The Planets, combines eastern culture and western  musical elements to tell an ancient story about Death’s claim upon a young man’s soul and his wife’s attempt to delay  the inevitable. Holst uses strings and woodwinds to create an ethereal sound that transports the audience to another  realm. Soprano Lisa Lockhart, tenor Eric Botto, bass-baritone Lloyd Reshard, Jr. and Ddancer Christina Santos all return to  First Coast Opera for this production.The Medium by Pulitzer Prize-winning composer Gian Carlo Menotti recalls film noir in this tragic drama of seances  and unexplained phenomena. The work was performed on Broadway in 1947, representing the first major and interna tional success for the composer best known for the Christmas opera Amahl and the Night Visitors. The story revolves  around Madame Flora. Does she really help others communicate with departed loved ones or is she merely a shyster  
taking their money?  

Former Metropolitan Opera singer Heidi Skok makes her FCO debut as Madame Flora, joined by Eric Botto as Toby  and other FCO newcomers Kyaunnee Richardson as Monica, Cass Panuska and Torlef Borsting as Mr. and Mrs. Gobin eau, and Laura Kimmel as Mrs. Nolan. Tickets are $40 for general admission; and $10 for students and children. Tickets are available at or  by calling 905-417-5555. The Waterworks is available through the generosity of the City of St. Augustine and the St.  Johns Cultural Council. This event is sponsored in part by the St. Johns County Tourist Development Council and the  St. Johns Cultural Council. 
Show dates and time: 
7:30 p.m. Friday, Feb. 3 and Saturday, Feb. 4 
2 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 5 
7:30 p.m. Friday, Feb. 10 and Saturday, Feb. 11 
2 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 12


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