Santa Fe Opera Trip History

From a quick count, I think that the groups I have taken to Santa Fe have bought a total of around 186 tickets in the 9 years that we've been (excluding my first trip in 1985), and I would estimate that 120+ different people have been on the trip. For almost all of them it was their first experience of the Santa Fe Opera, and for many it was their first time at any opera.


I went to my first ever opera at Santa Fe in 1985, while traveling round the States on a "Coolidge Pathfinder" travel scholarship from Balliol College, Oxford. I was staying with my friend Phil Maini in Los Alamos, and we decided at the last minute to go to the opera. We saw the rather obscure Die Liebe der Danae by Strauss. I remember that it starred Ashley Putnam, who I thought was wonderful.


I moved to Denver permanently in 1994, and organized my first group outing to Santa Fe in 1996. The first year there were five of us - myself, Jon Bresler, Peter Knudsen and Martin and Sheri Isdale. We saw Don Giovanni by Mozart.


I actually saw two operas in 1997: the group trip went to La Traviata by Verdi, and I went on a separate trip with my parents, who were visiting from the UK, to see Cosi Fan Tutte by Mozart. I think we had 9 people in the group that year - me and my girlfriend Patti, Jon and Michelle Bresler, Martin and Sheri Isdale, Peter Knudsen, and Warren and Judy Ferguson??


Santa Fe group 19881998 saw the opening of the new opera house, and a small group of us went to the opening night - myself and my friend Kate, and Warren and Judy Ferguson. We saw Madama Butterfly by Puccini.

The following night a larger group of 12 went to see The Magic Flute by Mozart - pictured on the left at Coyote Cafe are Noah Coccaro, Deb Miller, Martin and Sheri Isdale, Kate Waker, me, Judy and Warren Ferguson, Jon and Michelle Bresler, Carole Gayley and Todd Sturn.    Photo album


Santa Fe tailgate party 1999We saw Carmen by Bizet, which was great.

We had 13 attendees were Me, Jon and Michelle Bresler, Martin and Sheri Isdale, Carole Gayley, Erica Winkler, Russ and Leslie Chandler, Warren and Judy Ferguson, Todd Sturn and Deb Miller.

I think that this was the first year that we had a tailgate party.

Photo album


Santa Fe Opera group 2000We saw Le Nozze di Figaro by Mozart. We had 21 attendees: me, Todd Sturn and Deb Miller, Jon and Michelle Bresler, Russ and Leslie Chandler, Richard Meats, Dick and Vida Newell, Tim and Jean Cadman, Warren and Judy Ferguson, Steve and Fran Paine, Linda Bischoff, Diane, Joan Myhill, Sue Foster and Carla Gravesen.

As a matter of historical interest, this trip was the weekend before GE's due diligence for their purchase of Smallworld began, and there were highly secret meetings at Starbucks in Santa Fe to discuss the issue amongst the members of the Smallworld hierarchy who were there - me, Warren, Dick, Joan and Tim.    Photo album


Santa Fe Opera group 2001We had 43 attendees in the main group who went to see Lucia di Lammermoor by Donizetti, and a smaller group also saw Mitridate by Mozart, a rarely performed opera that he wrote when he was only 14.

Photo album



Santa Fe Opera group 2002We had 43 attendees again, and saw La Traviata by Verdi.

Photo album





We had a big drop in attendees down to 10 in 2003, which was nice in a way as things had got a little out of hand! But we had quality rather than quantity - me and Paula, Dick and Vida Newell, Dave and Peggy O'Brien, Jon and Michelle Bresler and Warren and Judy Ferguson (who are missing from the photo on the left as they had gone to a lecture, being more intellectual than the rest of us ;)!).

The full group saw Cosi Fan Tutte by Mozart, and six of us also saw Madame Mao by Bright Sheng, which had its world premiere at Santa Fe that year.

Photo album


In 2004 we had another exclusive group, with 12 opera goers and 3 who were just there for the tailgate party!!

We saw La Sonnambula by Bellini, featuring Natalie Dessay.

Photo album



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