The 2025 Festival Season

Experience sung stories brought to life by extraordinary artists in a theatre that brings you within arm’s reach of the action on the stage—sit any closer and you’ll need a costume! Every seat in our intimate 467-seat arena-style theatre is closer to the center of the stage than the first row at the Metropolitan Opera, giving the audience a truly immersive theatrical experience.

With the return of Richard Wagner's epic masterwork, an imaginative and dazzling Czech fairytale by Janáček, and Stravinsky's light-hearted, tongue-in-cheek homage to Mozart, the 2025 Festival Season is not-to-be-missed.

Season subscriptions
are now available for purchase. Select a 3-opera package to take advantage of savings off individual ticket prices. Plus, earn benefits like free date exchanges, monthly payments plans and more! Subscribe now >

Individual ticket reservations are now available for The Flying Dutchman, The Cunning Little Vixen and The Rake's Progress. Secure your individual ticket reservations >

The Flying Dutchman

by Richard Wagner
June 27, 29, July 4, 12, 15, 17, 20
Blank Performing Arts Center
Sung in German with English supertitles
Photo by Karli Cadel Photography

From its stormy overture to climactic finale, Wagner’s The Flying Dutchman lures you into its mysterious depths. The Dutchman, a ghostly sailor, is condemned to wander the waves for eternity. But every seventh year he disembarks to find a bride who can break his curse. In a small Norwegian fishing village, he fatefully encounters Senta, a young woman who is obsessed with the Dutchman’s legend. Can the power of love break the curse? How much must we sacrifice to bring about salvation?

Maestro David Neely leads this sweeping, evocative score which features epic choruses, thrilling orchestrations and a superstar cast headlined by bass-baritone Ryan McKinny and German soprano Dorothea Herbert, both making company debuts as the Dutchman and Senta, respectively. Company favorite Joshua Borths makes his mainstage directing debut, charting the course of Richard Wagner’s return to the DMMO stage for the first time in nearly 40 years. Steven C. Kemp returns as scenic designer and Ian Wallace debuts as projection designer.

The Cunning Little Vixen

by Leoš Janáček
June 28, July 6, 8, 11, 19
Blank Performing Arts Center
Sung in Czech with English supertitles
A company premiere and new Des Moines Metro Opera production
Production artwork by Oyoram

The tale of a quick-witted fox and her escape from confinement for a life in the forest is by turns joyful, witty, romantic and tragic. The Cunning Little Vixen follows the cycle of death and rebirth through the instinctive and immediate world of nature—animal and human, which Janáček loved so dearly. In this celebrated score, singers and orchestra embody the sounds of the forest, the feel of sunshine on your face and the thrill of a starlit sky.

Bursting with boundless invention, imaginative colors and a memorable cast of creatures, director Kristine McIntyre, visual image composer Oyoram and maestro David Neely reunite after their triumphant production of Bluebeard’s Castle to bring the vixen’s natural world to life. Vita Tzykun returns to join this creative team as costume designer and Luke Cantarella returns as scenic designer. Soprano Hera Hyesang Park debuts as the Vixen and Sun-Ly Pierce returns to the festival to make a role debut as the Fox.

The Rake's Progress

by Igor Stravinsky, W. H. Auden and Shester Kallman
July 5, 10, 13, 18
Blank Performing Arts Center
Sung in English with English supertitles
A new Des Moines Metro Opera production
Photo by Ben Easter and Kimberly Dragelevich

Inspired by William Hogarth’s famous series of paintings, Stravinsky’s The Rake’s Progress charts one man’s path from pleasure to ruin. When the mysterious Nick Shadow appears, Tom Rakewell abandons his sweetheart, Anne Trulove, and leaves behind his country life for the temptations of the city. But London’s glittering promise soon dissolves as love, money and sanity slip farther and farther from his grasp. Can true love save him, or will
the devil get the last laugh?

The Rake’s Progress is surely one of the 20th century’s most dazzling and original works—as if a Mozart opera wandered into a hall of mirrors. Comedy and tragedy are never far apart in this light-hearted work that can break your heart with the broadest of smiles. Jonas Hacker, Joélle Harvey and Sam Carl lead the cast in a new production by Chas Rader-Shieber, designed by Jacob A. Climer, featuring the festival debut of conductor Christopher Allen.