Eugene Onegin

Past Production

What if..?

Everyone has regrets, or those “what if” moments. How different would life be had you chosen another path, the road not taken?

Tchaikovsky explores this theme of love lost, found, and the one that got away in the lush, romantic, and beautifully Russian opera Eugene Onegin. This new production takes its cues from the poet Robert Frost and the musical language of Pushkin’s novel, telling the story of a brash young man who makes bold statements and bolder mistakes, only to find that perhaps happiness was in front of him the whole time.

“What is stirring in the depths of my cold and slothful heart? Vexation, vanity or, once again, that preoccupation of youth – love?”

A co-production of Lyric Opera of Kansas City, Hawaii Opera Theatre, Seattle Opera, and Michigan Opera Theatre

Performed in Russian with English supertitles

Cobb Energy Performing Arts Centre



All Performances: Pre-show fine dining
$53 for Sat, Tues, Fri dinner
$42.40 for Sun brunch

Final Dress Rehearsal

Thursday, February 28: Teachers with students may attend the final dress rehearsal for FREE
Available soon

Opera’s Night Out

Friday, March 8: Young professionals enjoy a pre-show cocktail hour + ticket to the show
$40 for Under 40


All Performances: Save up to 25%
For groups of 10 or more

Student Rush Tickets

All Performances: Students with ID may purchase discount tickets two hours in advance at the Cobb Energy Centre
$25 – 35 per seat

Get the Feeling

Photos by Jeff Roffman


Composer: Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky
Librettist: Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky/Konstantin Shilovsky
Based on the novel Eugene Onegin by Alexander Pushkin
Premiere Date: March 29, 1879, Maly Theatre, Moscow


Act I begins with the sounds of a duet drifting from inside the house. The sisters, Olga and Tatyana, are singing a verse by Pushkin, “Slïkhalil´ vï…vdokhnulil´ vï´” (Have you not heard…have you not sighed), accompanied by the harp. Outside, their mother Larina, who is sitting with her old nursemaid, Filippievna, is inspired to think of her youth and marriage and the importance of literature in her life. A chorus ensues, singing in traditional folk polyphony, “´Bolyat moi skorï nozhen´ ki so pokhodushki´” (My nimble feet are sore from walking), as Madame Larina’s serfs return from the fields. A single voice heard from afar begins the choral number. In response the chorus sings a modal melody with parallel and contrary motion. They perform the Dance of the Peasants singing, “Uzh kak po mostu-mostochku´ (Across the little bridge). The first folk song was composed by Tchaikovsky, but the second stems from oral tradition. The peasants take their leave as Olga begins a scena and aria, “Ya ne sposobna k grusti tomnoy,” (I am no good at languid melancholy). Olga compares herself with her sister Tatyana who is occupied with deep thoughts. Larina frets over Tatyana’s introversion. Filipyevna announces the arrival of guests.

Characters & Cast

Eugene Onegin

An arrogant and cynical aristocrat who likes to party.

David Adam Moore

David Adam Moore is a highly sought-after leading baritone by major opera houses and orchestras. He was last seen at The Atlanta Opera in Winter Journey (Winterreise).

More >


Olga’s fiancé and Onegin’s friend; a poet and a romantic.

William Burden

American tenor William Burden has won an outstanding reputation in a wide-ranging repertoire throughout Europe and North America and recently served as Artist in Residence at the 2017 Glimmerglass Festival.



Olga’s younger sister; a naive and bookish country girl who falls for Onegin.

Raquel González

Hailed as a “true artist” (Opera News), soprano Raquel González from Lawrence, Kansas recently completed three seasons as a Domingo-Cafritz Young Artist at Washington National Opera.



Tatyana’s sister; carefree and extroverted.

Megan Marino

Mezzo-soprano Megan Marino has been hailed by Opera News as “a gifted actress with a strong, appealing voice, graced by a rich lower register.” She makes her Atlanta Opera debut as Olga.


Newbie Guide

The Opera Experience

Operas on our mainstage are grand theatrical experiences. You can always expect the unexpected, and for our productions to be presented at the highest quality.


Many operas are in a foreign language. Supertitles are similar to subtitles in a film, except they are projected above the stage. These translations will help you follow what’s happening on stage.

What to Wear

There is no dress code at The Opera and you will see everything from jeans to evening gowns and formal suits. Most people use it as a chance to enjoy dressing up in their own style.

Arriving in Good Time

If you are late, you will be escorted to the nearest late seating area. At intermission ushers will show you to your seat. Plan ahead to arrive with extra time.

Directions & Parking at Cobb Energy Center

Enhance Your Visit

Pre-Performance Talk

Learn about the history of the opera, the composer, and more from artists and opera aficionados. One hour prior to curtain. Free with your ticket!

Learn More

Familiarizing Yourself with the Story

Because of the foreign languages, classical music, and often complex plots, you will very likely enjoy the performance better if you spend a few minutes familiarizing yourself with the story and characters in advance. Some people even like to listen to the music in advance and others prefer to let it wash over them during the show and perhaps look it up afterwards.

Visit our Study Guides Library

How is an Opera Staged?


Actors first audition for roles up to a year in advance, or for more experienced artists, directors also invite them to play a role.


Most of the rehearsals are held in our rehearsal hall, and not the actual theatre. The conductor begins orchestra rehearsals about a week and half before opening night. They have four rehearsals with the conductor, and then the singers are added into the mix.

Sets & Costumes

The Atlanta Opera Costume Shop alters the costumes to fit our singers. Sometimes they do have to make costumes if there aren’t enough, or if there is nothing that fits, etc. Once the sets are in place, the cast begins rehearsing at the theatre. The Opera production staff works with staff at the theatre to get all of the lighting and technical aspects of the production together.

Sitzprobe & Dress Rehearsal

The orchestra comes together with the singers in a special rehearsal called sitzprobe. There are no costumes during the sitzprobe, this is mainly to hear the voices with the orchestra. There is a piano dress rehearsal, when the singers rehearse in full costume for the first time so they can get used to wearing them. Finally, all of the pieces are put together for two full dress rehearsals leading up to opening night.

Creative Team

Conductor: Ari Pelto

Production Director: Tomer Zvulun

Associate Production Director: Stephanie Havey

Scenic Designer: Erhard Rom

Costume Designer: Isabella Bywater

Lighting Designer: Robert Wierzel

Wig, Hair & Makeup Designer: Dave Bova

Choreographer: Logan Pachciarz


Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky

Tchaikovsky was a leading Russian composer of the late 19th century, whose works are notable for their melodic inspiration and their orchestration. He is regarded as the master composer for classical ballet, as demonstrated by his scores for Swan Lake, The Nutcracker, and Sleeping Beauty. Among the most subjective of composers, Tchaikovsky is inseparable from his music. His work is a manifestation, sometimes charming, often showy, of repressed feelings that became more and more despairing in later years and were most fully expressed in his Sixth Symphony, one of the greatest symphonic works of its time. Though his later work rejected conscious Russian nationalism, its underlying sentiment and character are as distinctively Russian as that of the Russian nationalist composers. His success in bridging the gulf between the musician and the general public partly accounts for the position he enjoys in Russia, as well as throughout the world of music.

No composer since Tchaikovsky has suffered more from changes of fashion or from the extremes of over- and under-valuation. He achieved an enormous popularity with a wide audience, largely through his more emotional works; but the almost hypnotic effect that he was able to induce led to serious questioning of his true musical quality. He is certainly the greatest master of the classical ballet. His last three symphonies are deservedly famous, and to these should be added the neglected Manfred Symphony, the First Piano Concerto and the Violin Concerto. Notable among his other orchestral works are the early Romeo and Juliet Overture and the exquisite Serenade for Strings. Of the operas,Eugene Onegin is a masterpiece and The Queen of Spades dramatically effective. His chamber music includes string quartets, solo piano music and many fine songs.



Ari Pelto

Ari Pelto, Music Director of Opera Colorado, is widely known for performances that have been called poetic, earthy, vigorous and highly individual. He is in demand in opera houses and with symphony orchestras throughout the United States. At age of 24 Pelto was appointed Assistant Conductor at the Spoleto Festival and has gone on to conduct on stages worldwide. His international appearances include symphonic performances with the Bochumer Philharmoniker, productions of Le Nozze di Figaro and Falstaff at New National Theatre of Tokyo, and Faust at the Teatro Nacional Sucre in Quito, Ecuador.

In 2015, Pelto was named Opera Colorado’s first ever Music Director, where he has conducted acclaimed performances of Don Giovanni , Madama ButterflyAida and the recent world premiere of Lori Laitman’s long-awaited work, The Scarlet Letter, a recording of which will be released in fall 2017 on the Naxos label. In upcoming seasons at Opera Colorado Pelto will lead productions of La Fanciulla del WestLucia di LammermoorLa BohemeFalstaff, and the world premiere of Gerald Cohen’s new opera, Steal a Pencil for Me, based on a true love story set in a concentration camp during WWII.

After earning his Bachelor of Music in violin performance at Oberlin Conservatory, he studied conducting at the Sibelius Academy in Helsinki, Rubin Academy in Jerusalem, and with Imre Pallo at Indiana University.



Tomer Zvulun

General and Artistic Director of The Atlanta Opera since 2013, Tomer Zvulun is also one of opera’s most exciting stage directors, earning consistent praise for his creative vision, often described as cinematic and fresh. His work has been presented by prestigious opera houses around the world, including The Metropolitan Opera, the opera companies of Seattle, San Diego, Dallas, Boston, Cleveland, Cincinnati, Pittsburgh, Buenos Aires, Wexford, New Orleans, Minnesota and Wolf Trap, as well as leading educational institutes and universities such as The Juilliard School, Indiana University, Boston University, and IVAI in Tel Aviv. His debut in New York was in a new production of L’heure espagnole and Gianni Schicchi at Juilliard Opera Center that was praised by The New York Times for its “witty, fast-paced staging and the director’s Felliniesque style.”

Known for creating innovative, visually striking new interpretations for standard operas as well as championing new works by contemporary composers, his work has been seen internationally in Europe, South and Central America, Israel, and the US. Recently he created critically acclaimed new productions of Semele (Seattle Opera) Lucia di Lammermoor (Seattle, Atlanta, Cleveleand), La bohème (Seattle, Pittsburgh, Cleveland, Atlanta), Lucrezia Borgia (Buenos Aires), Gianni Schicchi (Juilliard, IVAI Tel Aviv), L’heure espagnole (Juilliard), The Magic Flute (Cincinnati, Atlanta, Indiana University), Don Giovanni (Wolf Trap, Cincinnati), Die Fledermaus (Dallas, Kansas City), Falstaff (Wolf Trap, Des Moines), Rigoletto (Boston, Atlanta, Omaha), Madama Butterfly (Atlanta, Castleton Festival), Tosca (National Theatre Panama, Atlanta) and Dialogues of the Carmelites (IVAI Tel Aviv), among many others.