From The Merry Widow’s Wardrobe to Your Own Closet

Paul Kotapish on November 10, 2020
Mezzo-soprano Frederica von Stade in the title role of SF Opera’s The Merry Widow | Credit: Adam Traum/SF Opera

Calling all opera-loving clothes horses and costume enthusiasts. San Francisco Opera is selling costumes previously worn by artists on the War Memorial Opera House stage to the general public this coming weekend, from Friday, Nov. 13 at noon through Sunday, Nov. 15 at midnight.

Unlike previous SFO costume warehouse sales, this year’s event is entirely virtual, which allows anyone with a browser and a credit card to peruse and purchase costumes online at

Among the treasures on offer are 500 costumes for adults from SFO productions including Franz Lehár’s The Merry Widow (2001), Johann Strauss II’s Die Fledermaus (1990, 1996, 2006), and Richard Wagner’s Tannhäuser (2007). Around 40 garments for children from Tannhäuser will also be offered. Costume designers include Thierry Bosquet (The Merry WidowDie Fledermaus), John Macfarlane (Don Giovanni, 2007) and Paul Brown (Tannhäuser), and most of the pieces were sewn by SF Opera artisans.

Prices for these one-of-a-kind artifacts range from $75 to $1,000, plus shipping and taxes. Detailed specifications and photos will be provided on the opera shop’s website.

Proceeds will benefit San Francisco Opera operating expenses including artist support and young artist development. Subscribers and donors of $75 or more will enjoy special access to a preview sale.

For a sneak peek and more information, visit

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