San Francisco Opera Names New Resident Conductor

Release date: 8/27/2015

San Francisco Opera Resident Conductor Giuseppe Finzi Steps Down, Succeeded by Spanish Conductor Jordi Bernàcer

Jordi Bernacer New Resident Conductor.pdf  Photos Available

San Francisco Opera Music Director Nicola Luisotti today announced that Company Resident Conductor Giuseppe Finzi has stepped down in order to accept a growing demand of international conducting assignments that conflict with his position in San Francisco. The Italian-born Finzi made his debut at the War Memorial Opera House in 2009 and has conducted numerous operas over the past six seasons including Puccini’s La Bohème last November, Rossini’s Il Barbiere di Siviglia, Puccini’s Turandot, Verdi’s Aida and La Traviata and family performances of Donizetti’s L’Elisir d’Amore.

Beginning with the 2015–16 Season, San Francisco Opera welcomes Spanish maestro Jordi Bernàcer as the Company’s new resident conductor through December 2017. In his upcoming assignments, Bernàcer will serve as special musical assistant to Music Director Luisotti on this season’s repertory of Verdi’s Luisa Miller, Donizetti’s Lucia di Lammermoor and Verdi’s Don Carlo, in addition to a wide range of musical and rehearsal activities.

Bernàcer has most recently conducted Puccini’s Tosca at the Teatro di San Carlo in Naples and concert performances at Spain’s Festival Internacional de Santander. His notable conducting credits include Massenet’s Manon, Puccini’s Manon Lescaut, Torroba’s Luisa Fernanda and Verdi’s Simon Boccanegra (the latter two with Plácido Domingo) at Valencia’s Palau de les Arts Reina Sofia; Mascagni’s Cavalleria Rusticana in Naples; Tosca for Los Angeles Opera; Bizet’s Carmen in Teatr Wielki in Poznan, Poland; and various operas and concerts at festivals in Italy, Spain and the Castleton Festival in Virginia. Bernàcer, 39, has worked with many leading conductors including Riccardo Chailly, Sir Andrew Davis, Valery Gergiev, Zubin Mehta and Georges Prêtre. Recently, he worked with Maestro Luisotti on presentations of Boito’s Mefistofele and Verdi’s Nabucco in Valencia.

“I had the great pleasure of working with Jordi twice in Valencia and he is a fantastic musician,” said Company Music Director Nicola Luisotti. “I’m very happy to bring him into the musical life of San Francisco Opera as our new resident conductor.”

Regarding the departure of Finzi, Luisotti remarked, “What a great pleasure it has been to work with Giuseppe. Now he is called by many theaters all over the world and I am particularly proud about that, like a father who sees his own son realize his personal dream. We will never forget you, and we look forward to your return with Il Barbiere di Siviglia.” Finzi will lead the San Francisco Opera Orchestra and Chorus in all five performances of Rossini’s comic opera, from November 25 through December 9.

Giuseppe Finzi commented: “Over the last seven years at San Francisco Opera, I have grown both as a musician and as a man, and all the memories of such a thrilling experience will always remain indelible in my heart. For all of this, I would like to thank all of my traveling companions, from the outstanding San Francisco Opera Orchestra and music staff to the amazing San Francisco Opera Chorus, from the always careful administration to the expert crew—without exception. Grazie.”

San Francisco Opera’s 93rd repertory season begins Friday, September 11 with Verdi’s Luisa Miller. The 2015–16 Season also features the Company premiere of Sondheim’s Sweeney Todd, The Demon Barber of Fleet Street; a new production of Donizetti’s Lucia di Lammermoor; Mozart’s The Magic Flute; Wagner’s Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg; Rossini’s The Barber of Seville; the American premiere of the double bill Getty’s Usher House and Debussy’s La Chute de la Maison Usher; Bizet’s Carmen; Verdi’s Don Carlo; and Janáček’s Jenůfa.

For complete season details, visit

For the complete press release, please view the attached PDF.