Florencia en el Amazonas by Opera San Jose

Opera San José is thrilled to present the long-awaited Bay Area premiere of Mexican composer, Daniel Catan’s masterpiece Florencia en el Amazonas, OSJ’s first spanish language work.

From Daniel Catan’s Florencia en el Amazonas, which debuted in 1996.

Sung in Spanish and inspired by the magical realism of novelist Gabriel García Márquez, it tells the story of a famous opera diva named Florencia who returns to her native South America.

There, she plans to perform at the esteemed opera house in Manaus. At the same time, she embarks on a steamboat journey down a river to search for her lost lover, who long ago disappeared into the wilds of the jungle.

April 20 – May 5, 2024
California Theatre
Market Street Entrance
340 South Fist St, San Jose, CA.




About event:

Set on a steamboat voyaging down the enchanted Amazon rainforest, the glamorous Florencia and the other passengers go on a life-changing adventure.

Charged with the magical realism of Gabriel Garcia Marquez, the opera blurs the boundaries of the real and the fantastic to explore and reveal longing, grief and love. Mo. Marcheso conducts.

In this two-act opera, Mexican composer Daniel Catán transports audiences to a 20th century riverboat sailing the Amazon River. There, a famous opera singer is returning home to perform, while hoping to reunite with her lover, a butterfly hunter who has disappeared into the jungle.

A story rich in allusion that bridges drama and fantasy, “Florencia en el Amazonas” will be performed in Spanish with English and Spanish supertitles.


Opera San José will present its first Spanish-language opera performed on its mainstage with the Bay Area premiere of Daniel Catán’s “Florencia en el Amazonas,” featuring soprano Marlen Nahhas in the title role of Florencia Grimaldi. This stunning magical-realism opera will be presented April 20 – May 5, 2024 at the California Theatre.
Photo courtesy of Opera San José


The cast:

Celebrated Latina international director Crystal Manich returns to OSJ where she helmed the company’s award-winning production of “West Side Story.” Working alongside Manich, Opera San José has cast a trio of astronomical talent to inhabit the female characters in the opera!

Soprano Marlen Nahhas [see photo above] in the title role of Florencia Grimaldi, soprano Melissa Sondhi as Rosalba, and mezzo-soprano Guadalupe Paz as Paula.

The opera will star soprano Marlen Nahhas in the title role of Florencia Grimaldi, soprano Melissa Sondhi as Rosalba, and mezzo-soprano Guadalupe Paz as Paula.

It will also include baritone Efraín Solís as Alvaro, tenor César Delgado as Arcadio, baritone Ricardo José Rivera as Riolobo, and bass-baritone Vartan Gabrielian as the Captain. Opera San José Director of Music Joseph Marcheso will conduct the production by Crystal Manich.

Former Resident Artist and favorite of OSJ audiences, baritone Efraín Solís, joins the cast as Alvaro while tenor César Delgado will play Arcadio. Baritone Ricardo José Rivera – who charmed audiences as Figaro in this season’s The Barber of Seville – returns as Riolobo and bass-baritone Vartan Gabrielian will take on the role of Captain. Opera San José Director of Music Joseph Marcheso will conduct.


Free shows:

Opera San Jose is celebrating its production of “Florencia en el Amazonas,” the company’s first Spanish-language mainstage opera, with free performances offering sneak peeks of Daniel Catán’s magical realism opera, which will receive its Bay Area premiere April 20-May 5 at the California Theatre in downtown San Jose.

The California Theatre will be the venue for a performance during the South First Friday art walk on Friday, April 5 at 5:30 p.m., as well as for an April 25 panel discussion with performers, artists and others at 3 p.m. to talk about the background of Catán’s opera.

The East San Jose Carnegie Library at 1102 E Santa Clara St. will host a community performance on Sunday, April 7, at 3:30 p.m.

For more information, visit or call 408-437-4450.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Upcoming Events