It's a Wonderful Life (2019)

It's a Wonderful Life (2019)

Nov 15-17, 2019

It's a Wonderful Life (2019)

"No matter how your story ends, no one is a failure who has friends."

Based on the 1946 Frank Capra movie of the same name (by permission of Paramount Licensing Inc.) and “The Greatest Gift” by Philip Van Doren Stern
Music by Jake Heggie
Libretto by Gene Scheer
Commissioned by the Houston Grand Opera
with Co-Commissioners San Francisco Opera and
the Jacobs School of Music at Indiana University
Premiered by the Houston Grand Opera in December 2016

It may be Christmas, but for George Bailey it is anything but the most wonderful time of the year. Based on the 1946 movie of the same name, Jake Heggie and Gene Scheer's brand new opera adaptation of "It's a Wonderful Life" follows a young guardian angel named Clara as she attempts—with heart and just a bit of holiday magic—to prove to George what an incredible impact he's had on his small town.

"It's a Wonderful Life" is presented by the Eklund Opera Program. CU College of Music faculty and students—often joined by guest artists—bring spine-tingling musicianship to CU's stunning Macky Auditorium. With lavish scenery and costumes and the CU Symphony in the pit, it's opera of the highest order.

Buying options: 

Save 15-20% with season tickets. Available in the Eklund Opera Series, Choice Option, or as an Add-On to any other season ticket order. Single ticket discounts available for groups (10+), seniors (65+), youth (K-12) and CU Boulder faculty, staff and students. Learn more

Performance dates and times: 

Friday, Nov. 15, 7:30 p.m.
Saturday, Nov. 16, 7:30 p.m.
Sunday, Nov. 17, 2 p.m.


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A beloved staple of the holiday season in a new medium

"One especially striking moment musically comes when Clara shows George what the town would be without him. This one you will have to experience in the theater, and it is one that Carthy particularly loves."

Boulder Weekly

Learn more - A beloved staple of the holiday season in a new medium

Classic holiday film gets Heggie and Scheer’s operatic treatment in Macky

"Heggie and Scheer couldn’t be more thrilled to be sharing this revamped version of the opera and its heartwarming message with the new cast and to experience the holiday magic alongside the audience on opening night."

CU Presents

Learn more - Classic holiday film gets Heggie and Scheer’s operatic treatment in Macky


Kelly Riordan

Mother Bailey

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Brendan Lutes


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Sam Bruckner


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Berenice Carrera

Angel, First Class

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Megan Pryor

Mary Hatch

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Anna Hansil


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Helena Regan

Mrs. O'Malley/Chorus

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Mary Elizabeth Morain

Young Mary and Understudy for Zuzu

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Andrew Taylor

Angel, First Class

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Asha Romeo

Chorus, A Woman

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Tanner Johnson

George Bailey

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Tyler Padgett

Mr. Potter

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Harper Pillari

Young Sam Wainwright and Janie Bailey

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Natalie Simpson

Angel, First Class

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View all cast

Artistic Team

Production Stage Manager

Christopher Denver

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Assistant Conductor

John McKeever

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Plan your visit

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Accessibility Services

The University of Colorado is committed to providing equal access to individuals with disabilities. If you are planning to attend an event take some time to review our accessibility services.

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