The Woodlands, TX – The world’s most popular opera, "Madame Butterfly," performed by Houston Grand Opera, takes place at The Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavilion May 27 at 8:00 p.m. Enchanting audiences worldwide for a century, “Madame Butterfly” is the heartbreaking tale a young, naïve Japanese geisha known as Butterfly, whose downfall begins when she marries a careless American naval officer, Lieutenant Pinkerton. "Madame Butterfly" is sung in Italian with English subtitles.
Stationed in Nagasaki, American Lieutenant B. F. Pinkerton, sung by Mexican tenor and HGO Studio artist Arturo Chacón-Cruz, enters into a temporary marriage with Cio-Cio-San, a 15-year-old Japanese geisha know as Butterfly (Canadian soprano Michele Capalbo, HGO debut). Butterfly believes in the validity of her marriage and even gives up her ancestral religion to join his faith, inciting her uncle, the Bonze, to rebuke her on her wedding day. She believes Pinkerton when, upon leaving her, he promises to return. When he does come back several years later, it is with his new American wife, Kate. They learned through Sharpless, the American consul, that Butterfly has borne Pinkerton’s son, and they have come to take the child back to America. Heartbroken, Butterfly agrees to relinquish her son on the condition that Pinkerton personally comes to fetch the boy. Before he arrives, she stabs herself with her father’s knife, believing it is better to die with honor than live with disgrace. Pinkerton arrives too late and laments over her body.
HGO’s Head of Music Staff Richard Bado conducts the Houston Grand Opera Orchestra and Chorus. Canadian baritone and Studio artist Joshua Hopkins sings the role of the American consul, Sharpless, who cautions Pinkerton not to marry Butterfly. American mezzo-soprano and Studio artist Jennifer Root sings the role of Suzuki, Butterfly’s faithful friend and servant. The director is Edward Berkeley, who staged HGO’s “The Two Faces of Romeo and Juliet” at Miller Outdoor Theatre last spring. Costumes are by HGO Costume Director Melissa Graff, and lighting and projections are by Lloyd Sobel.
Pre-concert activities in the North Plaza include: butterfly growing and other butterfly craft activities at the Learning Express Jack & Jill Club; dancing butterfly wands at The Pavilion Partners tent; and Opera in the Heights performing various arias on the side stage from 7:15 – 7:45 p.m. Chick-fil-A also will be on hand with fun activities for the family! Guests can register-to-win Tommy Bahama’s “Best Seats in the House.” Entries are eligible to win VIP parking and dinner for four catered by Tommy Bahama's during the next performing arts event. Join us for these and other festivities before the main event! Doors open at 7:00 p.m. The main stage performance begins at 8:00 p.m.
Bring the whole family and have a picnic on the hill. Free lawn chairs are available for this and all other performing arts events this season. Picnics are welcome. Keep in mind that beverages cannot be brought into The Pavilion.
Reserved seating tickets to Houston Grand Opera’s performance of “Madame Butterfly” are $35 and $25 for covered reserved, $15 for uncovered reserved and $10 for lawn seating. Children 12 and under can sit on the lawn for free. Seniors 60 and over and groups of 20 or more can receive a $2.50 discount on each ticket purchased. Tickets can be purchased at The Pavilion Ticket Office Monday through Friday from 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. and on event days through intermission. The Ticket Office is located at the north entrance to The Pavilion at 2005 Lake Robbins Drive in The Woodlands. Tickets also are available at all Ticketmaster outlets, including Foley’s, Fiesta, select FYE locations, Wherehouse Music, Media Magic and The Gallery of Conroe, by calling 713-629-3700, or online at www.ticketmaster.com. Most major credit cards are accepted. Some service charges may apply.
Preferred parking is available in the on-site Town Center Garage, located along Six Pines Drive. Parking is $5 per vehicle for this and most performing arts events. Tickets for on-site parking can be purchased in advance at all Ticketmaster locations and The Pavilion Ticket Office.
Houston Grand Opera’s “Madame Butterfly” is sponsored by FOX 26 and UPN 20.
For more information regarding upcoming events at The Pavilion, call 281-363-3300 or visit pavilion.woodlandscenter.org.
The Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavilion's 2005 Performing Arts Season is generously sponsored by The Houston Chronicle, The Wortham Foundation, The Pavilion Partners, and Continental Airlines, official airline of The Pavilion.