Best wishes to Ms. Yoncheva for a boringly normal pregnancy from here out, with a lovely healthy baby in her arms at the end of the process!SAN FRANCISCO, CA (May 2, 2014)—San Francisco Opera today announced casting changes for upcoming presentations of Giuseppe Verdi’s La Traviata and Giacomo Puccini’s La Bohème. Soprano Sonya Yoncheva, who was scheduled to appear as Violetta Valéry in six performances of La Traviata this summer and as Mimì in seven performances of La Bohème this fall, has withdrawn from the productions because she is expecting a baby.American soprano Nicole Cabell, a winner of the BBC Singer of the World Competition who recently made her Company debut to great acclaim in I Capuleti e i Montecchi, will replace Ms. Yoncheva as Violetta in the June 2014 performances of La Traviata opposite Saimir Pirgu and Stephen Costello (Alfredo Germont) and Vladimir Stoyanov (Giorgio Germont). Greek soprano Alexia Voulgaridou will make her San Francisco Opera debut as Mimì in the November/December 2014 performances of La Bohème that were to have starred Yoncheva opposite Michael Fabiano as Rodolfo.Sonya Yoncheva stated: “I am very sorry to be unable to participate in La Traviata with San Francisco Opera due to my pregnancy. My doctor has strictly forbidden me to travel on long-distance flights, and for this reason I feel obliged to withdraw from this production. I regret that my participation in the November/December 2014 production of La Bohème must also be cancelled, as I expect to deliver my baby in October. I wish all the best to my colleagues in San Francisco for these upcoming shows and hope to work together on a future project.”Additional cast changes for this summer’s La Traviata and this fall’s La Bohème are also announced: Tenor Daniel Montenegro replaces Pene Pati in the role of Gastone for all performances of La Traviata and baritone and current Adler Fellow Hadleigh Adams will sing the role of Schaunard, replacing Adler Fellow Philippe Sly, in all performances of La Bohème.
Those little changes at the end: Daniel Montenegro for Pene Pati is to be expected, as Pati is off to be a star in New Zealand. I wonder what's up with Adams swapping in for Sly, though, since they are both Adler Fellows and both excellent singers.