October 15, 2010
Stefan Weisman, Composers & The Voice alumni and Darkling composer, will present some of his original compositions THIS Sunday, October 17th, at 7pm as part of Barbès’s New Music Sunday. The performance will feature guitarist James Moore with Mellissa Hughes, Corey Dargel, and Wil Smith, as well as soprano Katharine Dain with composer Chris Berg.
In addition to Weisman’s compositions for acoustic and electric guitar (including Everywhere Feathers, with words by Anna Rabinowitz, author of Darkling: A Poem), Dain’s portion will include a sampling of Weisman’s vocal works, from the ethereal Look At The Light (from Weisman’s opera Fade, a commission from Second Movement (UK), with additional development from AOP) to Twinkie, which was part of AOP’s Composers & The Voice Workshop series, with text by Hostess. For the animal lovers out there, there’s also Law of the Jungle 1, based on a strange but true story about a lioness who adopts an antelope calf.
Who knows, you might even get a sneak preview of Corey Dargel’s Hold Yourself Together, or hear Ingram Marshall’s Soe-pa and Four Nabokov Songs by Chris Berg.
Barbès is a bar and performance space located in the Park Slope part of Brooklyn, and plays host to regular events such as music, readings and film screenings. 376 9th St. (corner of 6th Ave.), telephone (347) 422-0248.
October 2, 2009
Philadelphia audiences finally got to experience the multimedia opera-theatre work Darkling when it premiered in a new, semi-staged version for the Philadelphia Fringe Festival presented by Center City Opera Theater on Sep 8, 10, and 12, 2009. Conductor and CCOT Artistic Director Andrew Kurtz brought composer Stefan Weisman and librettist Anna Rabinowitz‘s haunting experimental work to life as part of ConNEXTions 2009: The Next Generation of Opera. Spanning the decades from the 1930’s to the post-World War period, Darkling is a remarkable story of a poet who struggles to identify and interpret the stories of various Polish-Jewish family affected by the extraordinary events of the Holocaust based only on the few letters and photographs they left behind.
Maeve Hoglund as the bride fleeing to America in the Sep 2009 performance of Darkling in Philadelphia.
Returning singers Hai-Ting Chinn and Jon Garrison joined with Maeve Hoglund, Martin Hargrove and Jason Switzer, narrator Sharon Sigal, and a string quartet under the stage direction of Matt Gray. AOP premiered Darkling in 2006 at the East 13th Street Theater in a fully staged version conceived and directed by Michael Comlish. A concert version also developed by Mr. Comlish toured through Europe in 2007.
October 23, 2008
Tomorrow, AOP will be holding its first libretto reading of Ugetsu, an opera-in-development by composer Michael Rose and librettist Emily Howard to be directed by little old me. If you were at the Composers & the Voice Six Scenes concert in 2003 then you heard a scene from Ugetsu then. I’m not sure how much has changed since then, but that’s something you can definitely ask Michael on Friday.
Michael was a composer during the first season of Composers & the Voice and we’re thrilled to have him bring his piece back with us for our current season of C&V that focuses on presenting works from our stable of 30 C&V composers. Not a bad collection! We paired with Mike just a week ago to present the first event in the C&V 08-09 calendar – Composers Up Close and Personal. There we saw C&V composers Ray Lustig, Daniel Sonenberg, Stefan Weisman, and Kala Pierson present works that first premiered at C&V, were later developed at AOP, and even some brand new music. C&V chair Tan Dun‘s “Pipa Concerto” was also performed.
Ugetsu is based on the 1953 Kenji Mizoguchi film Ugetsu monogatari (Tales of the Pale and Silvery Moon After the Rain) and is a ghost story about love or a love story about ghosts. And since it seems to be a requisite of this genre, there is pottery scene. A few actually. Mizoguchi is considered one of the greatest filmmakers of Japan and by coincidence the Criterion Collection released a box set of his works just this month. So come see the reading and then go home and watch the movies. I think you’ll be turning Japanese. I really think so.
The reading will be about an hour long followed by our discussion period where Michael and Emily will be able to get your feedback about what you just saw. Go to the events page to get your free tickets!
September 17, 2008
Conrad Cummings‘s The Golden Gate and Stefan Weisman‘s Fade, two projects that have workshopped at AOP, were staged by the Center City Opera Theater at the Philadelphia Fringe Festival from September 12th to 14th. The Golden Gate will receive an AOP workshop of the entire opera in 2009. The official premiere of Fade will take place by the Second Movement Opera Company in London from October 22nd to 25th.