La traviata

Past Production

A love story as old as time.

It has been told and retold over and over, in movies (Pretty Woman) and books (La Dame aux Camélias) and musicals (Moulin Rouge), but no one tells the story quite like Verdi – with a sumptuous setting and sweeping music. Violetta, a young and beautiful courtesan, falls in love with the equally young and beautiful Alfredo. Love, however, can be deadly to a woman in her position.

The Atlanta Opera mainstage season closes with this classic story of love and loss – a gorgeous interpretation of one of the most well-known and well-loved operas in the repertoire.

“How strange! How strange! His words are burned upon my heart! Would a real love be a tragedy for me?”

Performed in Italian with English supertitles

A new co-production with The Atlanta Opera, Washington National Opera, The Glimmerglass Festival, Seattle Opera, and Indiana University

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, April 25: Teachers with students may attend the final dress rehearsal for FREE
Available soon

Opera’s Night Out

Friday, May 3: Young professionals enjoy a pre-show cocktail hour + ticket to the show
Get tickets >


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 Scott Suchman for Washington National Opera

Listen to La traviata

Approximate runtime: 2 hours 20 minutes including 1 intermission


Composer: Giuseppe Verdi
Librettist: Francesco Maria Piave
Premiere Date: March 16, 1853

At a party in Violetta’s salon, Flora, the Marquis and the Baron arrive late, followed by Gastone and Alfredo. Gastone introduces Alfredo to Violetta and tells her that he visited her every day that she was ill. As all sit down to dinner, Gastone asks the Baron to propose a toast, but he refuses, while Alfredo accepts. Music is heard from another room and all are invited to dance. As the guests leave the room Violetta has a coughing attack. Alfredo remains behind and expresses his concern for Violetta’s health, proclaiming that only he truly loves her. Violetta can offer only friendship and suggests that he won’t find it difficult to forget her. As he starts to leave, Violetta stops him and offers him a camellia inviting him to come back when the flower has faded. The guests reenter and bid good night. Confronted with the power of his affection and commitment, Violetta considers if it is possible for someone like her to find true love. She dismisses the idea as ludicrous and proclaims she was meant for freedom and enjoyment.

Characters & Cast

Violetta Valéry

A courtesan who falls in love with Alfredo and grapples with a particularly tragic fate.

Zuzana Marková

Czech-born soprano Zuzana Markova is a native of Prague and a graduate of the Prague Conservatory. This is her American and Atlanta Opera debut.

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Alfredo Germont

A deeply romantic young man in love with Violetta.

Mario Chang

Tenor Mario Chang, a native of Guatemala City, Guatemala, recently completed the Lindemann Young Artist Development Program at the Metropolitan Opera.


Giorgio Germont

Alfredo’s father; stoic and old-fashioned.

Fabian Veloz

Argentine baritone Fabian Veloz has become one of the most important figures of his generation and a respected artist in the Argentina lyric scene.


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.

Flora Bervoix

Marchese D’Obigny

Barone Douphol

Dr. Grenvil


*member of The Atlanta Opera Studio
**alumnus of The Atlanta Opera Studio

Creative Team

Conductor: Arthur Fagen

Production Stage Director: Francesca Zambello

Associate Director: Joshua Horowitz

Scenic Designer: Peter Davison

Costume Designer: Jess Goldstein

Lighting Designer: Mark McCullough

Wig & Makeup Designer: James McGough

Associate Scenic Designer: James Rotondo III

Associate Lighting Designer: AJ Guban

Assistant Lighting Designer: Ben Rawson

Choreographer: Parker Esse

Associate Choreographer: Adrea Beasom

Associate Conductor/Chorus Master: Rolando Salazar

Supertitles: Kelley Rourke


Giuseppe Verdi

Famed composer Giuseppe Verdi was born Giuseppe Fortunino Francesco Verdi on October 9 or 10, 1813, in the community of Le Roncole, near Busseto in the province of Parma, Italy. His mother, Luigia Uttini, worked as a spinner, and his father, Carlo Giuseppe Verdi, made a living as a local inkeeper.

Verdi first developed musical talents at a young age, after moving with his family from Le Roncole to the neighboring town of Busseto. There, he began studying musical composition. In 1832, Verdi applied for admission at the Milan Conservatory, but was rejected due to his age. Subsequently, he began studying under Vincenzo Lavigna, a famous composer from Milan.

Verdi got his start in Italy’s music industry in 1833, when he was hired as a conductor at the Philharmonic Society in Busseto. In addition to composing, he made a living as an organist around this time. Three years later, in 1836, Verdi wed Margherita Barezzi, the daughter of a friend, Antonio Barezzi.


Arthur Fagen

Arthur Fagen has been the Carl and Sally Gable music director at The Atlanta Opera since 2010, and continues to be in great demand as a conductor of symphony and opera both in Europe and the United States. He is a regular guest at the most prestigious opera houses, concert halls, and music festivals at home and abroad, and his career has been marked by a string of notable appearances including the Metropolitan Opera, Lyric Opera of Chicago, Staatsoper Berlin, Munich State Opera, Deutsche Oper Berlin, and the New York City Opera.

A former assistant of Christoph von Dohnanyi (Frankfurt Opera) and James Levine (Metropolitan Opera), he served as principal conductor in Kassel and Brunswick, as chief conductor of the Flanders Opera of Antwerp and Ghent, as music director of the Queens Symphony Orchestra, and as a member of the conducting staff of the Lyric Opera of Chicago.

Fagen was born in New York and studied with Laszlo Halasz, Max Rudolf (Curtis Institute) and Hans Swarowsky. Fagen has an opera repertoire of more than 75 works and has recorded for Naxos and BMG. The recent Naxos recording of Martinůs works was awarded Editor’s Choice in the March 2010 issue of Gramophone Magazine.



Francesca Zambello

An internationally recognized director of opera and theater, Francesca Zambello’s American debut took place at the Houston Grand Opera with a production of Fidelio in 1984. She debuted in Europe at Teatro la Fenice in Venice with Beatrice di Tenda in 1987 and has since staged new productions at major theaters and opera houses in Europe and the USA. Collaborating with outstanding artists and designers and promoting emerging talent, she takes a special interest in new music theater works, innovative productions, and in producing theater and opera for wider audiences.

Ms. Zambello has been the General Director of The Glimmerglass Festival since 2010, and the Artistic Director of The Washington National Opera at the Kennedy Center since 2012. She also served as the Artistic Advisor to the San Francisco Opera from 2005-2011, and as the Artistic Director of the Skylight Theater from 1987-1992. In her current roles at the Kennedy Center and the Glimmerglass Festival she is responsible for producing 12 productions annually. She has begun major commissioning programs for new works in both companies that have resulted in productions of many large and small-scaled new works. During her tenure both companies have increased their national and international profiles.