Brian Mulligan begins his 2018/19 season with his highly anticipated debut as Mandryka in Strauss’ Arabella at the San Francisco Opera. The new production directed by Tim Albery takes this Viennese love story from the 1860s to World War I. Marc Albrecht, one of the leading Strauss interpreters, makes his United States opera debut conducting the San Francisco Opera Orchestra and Chorus, and an extraordinary roster of artists.

Running from October 16 to November 3, the cast features Ellie Dehn performing the title role for the first time, Heidi Stober as Zdenka, Daniel Johansson as Matteo, and Hye Jung Lee as the Fiakermilli. A co-production of the Santa Fe Opera, Minnesota Opera, and Canadian Opera Company, this production was featured as a top critics’ pick of 2017 with the New York Times acclaiming the production: “There’s such realism, clarity and compassion (to say nothing of beauty) in how the creators show Arabella’s maturation happening before your very eyes and ears; and vanishingly rare in opera is the formation of real, adult love.”

On October 13 at the Dianne and Tad Taube Atrium Theater, San Francisco Opera and San Francisco Opera Guild present an Insight Panel with Arabella cast members Ellie Dehn (Arabella), Heidi Stober (Zdenka) and Brian Mulligan (Mandryka) in discussion with San Francisco Opera Dramaturg Dr. Clifford “Kip” Cranna. Take a glimpse into the creative process as the panelists share their insights about the challenges and rewards of bringing Strauss’ romantic work to life. Tickets are available online at