All photos: Steve di Bartolomeo, Westside Studio Images
As the creative director and stage director for Opera Parallèle since 2007, Brian Staufenbiel actively works across a wide range of artistic disciplines. Specializing in multimedia and interdisciplinary productions, his progressive approach to stagecraft garnered critical acclaim for several of the company’s productions, including Heggie’s Dead Man Walking, O’Regan’s Heart of Darkness, Harbison’s The Great Gatsby, Glass’ Orphée and Les Enfant Terribles, Golijov’s Ainadamar, Gorb’s Anya 17, Berg’s Wozzeck, Davies’ The Lighthouse, Blanchard’s Champion and Dove’s Flight. This season, Mr. Staufenbiel helms two new productions for Opera Parallèle, Rachel Portman’s The Little Prince and Bernstein’s Trouble in Tahiti with Heggie’s At the Statue of Venus .
Mr. Staufenbiel recently created a new production of Das Rheingold for Minnesota Opera in Fall 2016, which he will remount with Arizona opera and Fort Worth Opera in 2018. He is currently creating a new production of Gordon Getty’s Usher House and Canterville Ghost for the Center of Contemporary Opera in NY and LA Opera. He will be directing and is dramaturge for two new world premieres; Today it Rains with composer Laura Kaminsky and librettists Mark Campbell and Kimberly Reed for Spring 2019, as well as the world premiere production of a new work by composers Lembit Beecher and librettist Hannah Moscovitch.
Recently, Staufenbiel directed the World Premiere of Angel Heart by Luna Pearl Woolf which was performed at Cal Performances in Berkeley, Carnegie Hall in New York City, and Festival del Sole in Sonoma. In addition to opera, Staufenbiel also brings his unique brand of experimental staging to theater, and has shared a residency at Banff with composer Luna Pearl Woolf to create an original theater piece - Mélange à Trois- premiered in Montréal.
Staufenbiel’s interdisciplinary approach to opera extends to his academic activity. He has directed the opera program at the University of California, Santa Cruz for over 17 years, where he has mounted a wide spectrum of award winning productions ranging from traditional operas to original works by contemporary composers. Staufenbiel holds a DMA from the Eastman School of Music and currently resides in San Francisco.