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Conducted by George Manahan
Directed by E. Loren Meeker


OCT 25 - Nov 2, 2019
Keller Auditorium
222 SW Clay St
Portland, OR 97201


Madama Butterfly is the story of a young wife and mother named Cio-Cio-San, in Nagasaki, Japan, in 1904. She awaits the return of her beloved B.F. Pinkerton, a lieutenant in the U.S. Navy. When his ship finally does come in, her drams for the future break along with her heart.

“An idealistic, Japanese girl falls for a brash, entitled American soldier whose actions turn her love into a story ending in exploitation, betrayal, and abandonment. Puccini’s masterpiece Madama Butterfly forces American audiences to consider our history, culture, and the unknown victims of our past foreign policy. Our goal within a traditional setting is to honor Japanese culture through insightful storytelling and modern characterization. This creates an environment where we can examine the harsh realities of our past in an effort to learn from our mistakes at global, national, and personal levels.” – E. Loren Meeker, Director


Performed in Italian with English captions. 
Approximately 2 hours, 50 minutes with one intermission.

Classic sets and costumes honor tradition on the grandest scale in our season. Internationally acclaimed Japanese soprano Hiromi Omura makes her U.S. debut as our heroine.

Listen for the famous aria “Un Bel Di Vedremo” and The Humming Chorus: one of the most beautiful aural landscapes in the world of opera.

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Looking for dining options, directions, or more information? Create your opera experience with the assistance of our Portland Opera Concierge: | 503-241-1407

Join us one hour before curtain for a discussion providing context and unique insights into the world of the opera. After the performance join company members and guests from the production, for a post-show conversation.

Tickets available from $35. View seating map for Keller Auditorium.


We recognize that there is a complicated set of factors surrounding both the history of and the act of producing Madama Butterfly today, that includes Japanese and American relations, Japanese American experiences, United States military history, power, representation, privilege, and more. As we develop our work onstage with this production, we also seek to cultivate platforms and additional public programming opportunities to enhance community dialogue and context surrounding this piece. If you’d like to contact our team please email

Madama Butterfly Preview: Multnomah County Public Library
Sunday, October 13, 2019 | 2pm
Central Branch | 801 SW 10th Ave.

Join us for a preview featuring performances by Resident Artists and commentary by Chorus Master & Assistant Conductor Nicholas Fox. Free admission. 

Context & Conversation: Puccini, Madama Butterfly, and Honoring Tradition
Thursday, October 24, 2019 | 7 PM

Hampton Opera Center | 211 SE Caruthers St.
Free admission. Reservations are recommended.
503.421.1802 |

Join Portland Opera in welcoming special guest speakers Dr. Kunio Hara (Associate Professor of Music History at the University of South Carolina) and Dr. Laura Mueller (Portland Japanese Garden) for an evening of insights and conversation, in preparation for the opening of Madama Butterfly. The program will be an hour, followed by a question and discussion session.

East & West: A Special Evening of Song
Tuesday, October 29, 2019 | 7 PM

Whitsell Auditorium, Portland Art Museum | 1219 SW Park Ave. Free Admission.  Reservations highly recommended. 
503.421.1802 |

Join Portland Opera for a unique musical program, featuring guest artists and members of the Madama Butterfly company. The selections will explore influence and musical cross-pollination between the East and the West. The evening will include an aria from An American Dream (music by Jack Perla and libretto by Jessica Murphy Moo), a contemporary chamber opera that reflects on the experiences of WWII-era Japanese Americans who were persecuted and imprisoned by the United States government. Chorus Master & Assistant Conductor Nicholas Fox as pianist.


Cio-Cio-San, Madama Butterfly Hiromi Omura

Lt. Pinkerton Luis Chapa

Suzuki Nina Yoshida

Sharpless Troy Cook

Goro Karl Reyes

Prince Yamadori/The Imperial Commissioner André Chiang

The Bonze Peixin Chen

Kate Pinkerton Camille Sherman

Conductor George Manahan

Director E. Loren Meeker

Lighting Designer Mark McCullough

Japanese Movement Specialist Momo Suzuki

Earlier Event: October 25
Beethoven’s Fifth – Salem