After 89 years of darkness, the Napa Valley Opera House will reopen Aug. 1 with a special performance by the Tony, Emmy, Oscar and Academy Award-winning actress; show time is 8 PM. The following morning, the Opera House will offer a free tour of the newly refurbished main hall, the Margrit Biever Mondavi Theatre, from 10 AM to 2 PM. During its heyday, the Napa Valley Opera House featured performances from such luminaries as Jack London, John Philip Sousa and soprano Luisa Tetrazzini. The hall went dark in 1914, and by the mid-1980's was on the verge of being condemned. The campaign to restore the building kicked into high gear in 1986 when Robert and Margrit Mondavi offered a $2.2 million challenge grant.
A native of Humacao, Puerto Rico, Rita Moreno won the Academy Award for her role as Anita in the film version of West Side Story. She earned a Best Featured Actress in a Play Tony for her work in Broadway's The Ritz and nabbed two Emmys: one for a guest appearance on "The Muppet Show" and another for a stint on "The Rockford Files." She was awarded the Grammy for her performance on "The Electric Company" album for children. Moreno most recently starred on the acclaimed HBO series “Oz.”
Tickets for the Aug. 1 evening are priced $15-$35 and are available by calling (707) 226-7372. The Napa Valley Opera House box office is located at 1000 Main Street, Suite 150.