FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
January 30, 2014
Michelle Tabnick, (646) 765-4773,
GOTHAM CHAMBER OPERA
presents The Raven
May 28-May 31, 2014
presented in collaboration with the
Gerald W. Lynch Theater at John Jay College
Gotham Chamber Opera, in collaboration with the Gerald W. Lynch Theater at John Jay College, presents the U.S. Premiere of The Raven as part of the NY PHIL BIENNIAL, on May 28, 2014 at 7:30pm and May 30 and 31, 2014 at 8pm, at the Gerald W. Lynch Theater, 524 West 59th Street (between 10th and 11th Avenues), New York City. Tickets are $30-$175 and will be available at www.ticketcentral.com or 212-279-4200. For more information visit www.gothamchamberopera.org.
With music by Toshio Hosokawa, and based on the poem by Edgar Allan Poe, the creative team for The Raven consists of Neal Goren, conductor; Luca Veggetti, stage director/choreographer; Clifton Taylor, scenic and lighting designer; and Peter Speliopoulos, costume designer.
Toshio Hosakawa’s The Raven, a monodrama for mezzo-soprano and twelve instrumentalists, will be given its U.S. Premiere at the Gerald W. Lynch Theater as part of the New York Philharmonic’s inaugural NY PHIL BIENNIAL festival. Directed and choreographed by Luca Veggetti, it will star Fredrika Brillembourg in the role of the Narrator and will be danced by Alessandra Ferri, former prima ballerina assoluta with the Royal Ballet (1980-1984), American Ballet Theatre (1985-2007) and La Scala Theatre Ballet (1992-2007).
Based on the narrative poem by Edgar Allan Poe, The Raven tells the story of a man visited by a raven after the death of his lover. To all the questions the man asks, the raven only answers, ‘nevermore’. After drifting through states of different emotions, the narrator, still burdened with the loss of his beloved, finally lays down in the raven’s shadow, his soul trapped and lifted ‘nevermore’.
Of Hosakawa’s The Raven, Gotham Artistic Director Neal Goren writes: “I first became aware of Toshio Hosokowa after reading the ecstatic reviews coming from Europe for his chamber opera Matsukaze in summer 2011. Upon hearing his music, I was shocked that I had not known of this modern master previously. His music is wildly sensual and atmospheric, with luminous colors and exhibiting a huge emotional range. Poe’s unsettling text interacts with Hosokowa’s diaphanous, iridescent colors to create an unforgettable evening of haunting, intense beauty. It will be my joy and honor to conduct the U.S. premiere of The Raven for the inaugural NY PHIL BIENNIAL.”
The program also includes “Conte fantastique: Le Masque de la Mort rouge” (d’après une des Histoires extraordinaires d’Edgar Poë), by André Caplet.
Gotham Chamber Opera, now in its twelfth season, is the nation’s leading opera company dedicated to vibrant, fully staged productions of works intended for intimate venues. Its high quality presentations of small-scale rarities from the Baroque era to the present have earned Gotham an international reputation and unanimous critical praise.
Founded by conductor and Artistic Director Neal Goren, Gotham debuted in 2001 (as Henry Street Chamber Opera) with the American premiere of Mozart’s Il sogno di Scipione. In subsequent seasons, Gotham has produced many more local and world premieres, including such works as Purcell’s Dido and Aeneas, Milhaud’s Les Malheurs d’Orphee, Bohuslav Martinu’s Les Larmes du Couteau and Hlas Lesa, Sutermeister’s Die schwarze Spinne, Handel’s Arianna in Creta, Britten’s Albert Herring, and Rossini’s Il Signor Bruschino. The company renamed itself Gotham Chamber opera and became an independent 501(c)3 organization in 2003.
Gotham has partnered with notable New York and national institutions, including Lincoln Center Festival and Spoleto USA for the 2005 production of Respighi’s La bella dormente nel bosco; the Morgan Library and Museum for Scenes of Gypsy Life (an evening of song cycles by Janáček and Dvořák) in 2008; and the American Museum of Natural History and the American Repertory Theater for 2010’s production of Hadyn’s Il mondo della luna. That production featured lunar exploration video developed by the Museum and NASA and broadcast on the Hayden Planetarium’s 180-degree dome.
Gotham has earned a reputation for showcasing outstanding young singers alongside established directors and choreographers such as Mark Morris (the 2009 production of Hadyn’s L’isola disabitata), David Parsons (the New York stage premiere of Astor Piazzola’s tango opera, María di Buenos Aires), Karole Armitage (the world premiere of Ariadne Unhinged), Basil Twist (La bella), Christopher Alden (Scipione and Arianna in Creta), and Diane Paulus (Il mondo). In October 2010, Gotham partnered with director Moisés Kaufmann and his company, Tectonic Theater Project, to co-produce the first United States stage performances of Xavier Montsalvatge’s El Gato con Botas, at the New Victory Theater.
For the 2011-2012 season, Gotham celebrated its tenth anniversary with the world premiere of Dark Sisters, by Nico Muhly, and a revival of its first production, Mozart’s Il sogno di Scipione. Moving into its second decade in 2013, Gotham presented a sold-out run of Cavalli’s Eliogabalo at The Box and two performances of Daniel Catán’s La Hija di Rappaccini (Rappaccini’s Daughter) at the Brooklyn Botanic Garden’s Cherry Esplanade. That production then toured to Los Angeles, where it was presented by the Broad Stage at the Greystone Manor in Beverly Hills. In October 2013, the company presented Baden-Baden 1927, a fully-staged production of the quadruple bill of short chamber operas by Hindemith, Toch, Milhaud, and Weill, premiered at the legendary Baden-Baden Festival of Contemporary Music performance of July 17, 1927. Gotham Chamber Opera’s 2013/2014 season continued with a sold-out run of co-production with Trinity Church Wall Street, Marc-Antoine Charpentier’s La descente d’Orphée aux enfers in January. In February, the company will present a double bill co-produced with and staged at The Metropolitan Museum of Art, consisting of Il combattimento di Tancredi e Clorinda by Monteverdi, and a newly commissioned work, I Have No Stories to Tell You, by Gotham Chamber Opera Composer-In-Residence Lembit Beecher.
For more information, visit www.gothamchamberopera.org.
The mission of the Gerald W. Lynch Theater is to provide diverse artistic and scholarly events that will educate, entertain and involve our academic and public communities. These events shall resonate with the goals and mission of John Jay College: EDUCATING FOR JUSTICE; to provide a source of free or low cost cultural and artistic presentations to the John Jay community and the surrounding neighborhood of Clinton; to provide a venue for John Jay College academic and community events.
For more information about the Gerald W. Lynch Theater please visit: www.jjay.edu/theater.