Periodic discounts on cultural events produced by community organizations and institutional partners are just one more perk of your Mechanics' Institute membership. August 1-6, Merola Opera Program presents the world premiere of If I Were You by Jake Heggie and Gene Scheer, opening at the Herbst Theatre in San Francisco. Mechanics' Institute members may use the promo code MEROLA10 for 10% off tickets. For more information and to purchase tickets, visit merola.org/ifiwereyou.
In this opera in two acts, Fabian Hart, an aspiring writer, yearns for adventure. Brittomara, a shape-shifting devil, offers Fabian supernatural power that allows his increasingly lost soul to transfer from person to person in search of a better identity, leaving a trail of human wreckage and hollow shells. Gene Scheer's libretto updates the setting of If I Were You, based on the novel Si j’étais vous by Julien Green, to the present day. It is a Faustian/Jekyll & Hyde story with an element of magical realism which is new ground for Heggie and Scheer. The story begins with the hero, Fabian, nearly dying in a car crash. The devil, in the guise of a beautiful, seductive woman, offers him the power to breathe his soul into another person so that he can live their life instead of his own. He can live forever this way, if he chooses, moving from body to body. As the shy Fabian becomes a wealthy older man, a young handsome brute, and eventually a young woman, the opera will deal with issues of age, power, sexual politics, and gender identity that are both timeless and very much part of the contemporary zeitgeist. (read more at https://merola.org/merola-first-opera)
Take advantage of this opportunity to see what promises to be an engaging production, with promo code MEROLA10 for 10% off tickets at merola.org/ifiwereyou.