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New Production


Apr. 22 -  May 6, 2022 

A visionary artist reimagines a masterwork

Full of arresting pools of color, breathtaking lighting design, and highly stylized movement, this masterful new production could only have been created by visionary director Robert Wilson. Considered Puccini’s finest musical masterpiece, Turandot premiered in 1926, after the composer’s death. The opera transports audiences to a fantasy land ruled by the titular princess, who doesn’t want to marry. She gives her would-be suitors two options: answer three vexing riddles correctly, or die by beheading. Her plan is working perfectly—until Calaf comes to town and she meets her match. But first Turandot must try, one more time, to kill him. Celebrated soprano and HGO Studio alumna Tamara Wilson (Turandot), tenor Kristian Benedikt in his HGO debut (Calaf), HGO Studio alumna, and soprano Nicole Heaston (Liù), and bass and Studio alumnus Peixin Chen (King Timur) lead the diverse and globe-spanning cast. HGO Principal Guest Conductor Eun Sun Kim takes the podium for this superlative new production.

Co-production with Teatro Real of Madrid, Lithuanian National Opera and Ballet Theatre Vilnius, Canadian Opera Company of Toronto, and Opéra National de Paris

Performance Dates: 

Friday, April 22, 2022

Sunday, April 24m, 2022

Saturday, April 30, 2021

Tuesday, May 3, 2022

Friday, May 6, 2022

Sunday, May 8m, 2022

  • Price Range
    $20 - $210
  • Age
    Appropriate for all ages.
  • Running Time
    2 hours, 38 minutes. Two intermissions.
  • Language
    Sung in Italian with projected English translation.

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Cast & Creative

Tamarawilson 185

Tamara Wilson


Kristian Benedikt

Kristian Benedikt


Nicole Heaston Headshot (1)

Nicole Heaston


Peixin Chen Crop

Peixin Chen



Takaoki Onishi


Andrew Stenson


Fishyfoto Carlossantelli 52A5867 Crop

Carlos Enrique Santelli

Emperor Altoum

William Guanbo Su Headshot Crop
William Guanbo Su

A Mandarin

Creative Team

Eun Sun Kim

Principal Guest Conductor

Robert Wilson (C) Yiorgos Kaplanidis Hires

Robert Wilson

Stage Director, Set and Lighting Designer

Thumbnail Roehrbein Panzer Col

Nicola Panzer

Co-Stage Director

Stephanie Engeln

Co-Set Designer

Jacques Reynaud

Costume Designer

Manu Halligan

Makeup and Hair Designer

John Torres Headshot

John Torres

Co-Lighting Designer

Tomek Jeziorski

Video Artist

Richard Bado
Richard Bado

Chorus Master

Houston Grand Opera Orchestra and Chorus, and Children's Chorus

What People Are Saying

“It was precisely this dichotomy, however, that allowed Wilson to re-imagine not only Puccini’s opera but opera itself, all the while setting the ideal stage for a masterful musical performance.” 

- Opera Canada, 2019 

“Among the production’s most remarkable aspects was its lighting (also designed by Wilson), whose ubiquitous contrast of ghostly blue-white and deep, piercing red defined not only the opera’s staging, but also its energy and pace. Similarly, Wilson’s no-frills set design offered a masterclass in thrift, as simple, slow-moving geometric shapes accomplished enormous tonal shifts throughout the narrative.” 

- Opera Canada, 2019 

“…soprano Tamara Wilson (Turandot), whose crisp, stately tones soared above the orchestra. In consistently achieving a rich, resonant sound, Wilson probably benefited the most from the production’s lack of physical movement, as her stillness only emphasized the incredible power of her unembellished voice.” 

- Opera Canada, 2019 

Safety Remains Our Top Priority

Thank you all for your continued support as we navigate the ever-changing environment surrounding COVID-19. Because of the protocols put in place this past fall, we were able to make a triumphant return to the Wortham.

At this time, all guests attending HGO performances will be required to wear a mask covering the nose and mouth while inside the Wortham Theater Center, including while seated for a performance.

We are grateful to have wonderful partners in Houston Methodist, who have graciously agreed to guide us as we establish safety protocols. In addition, we have consulted prominent physicians and are working in accordance with world health provider recommendations.

For more information on the measures HGO is implementing for live performances please review our safety page.

Learn More


Production Sponsors

  • Margaret Alkek Williams

  • The Brown Foundation, Inc.

  • The Robert & Jane Cizik Foundation

  • Louisa Stude Sarofim Foundation

Vinson & Elkins LLP Blue 022019
  • Nina and Michael Zilkha

  • Carol Franc Buck Foundation

  • Muffy and Mike McLanahan

Baker Botts Any Time Logo Is In Color

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