Opera Philadelphia

An Opera Walks into a Bar

By Opera Philadelphia

An opera walks into a bar...

It sounds like the start of a joke. A joke about opera! But it's actually the start of an in-depth conversation about the creation of Breaking the Waves, the new chamber opera making its World Premiere in September 2016 as part of Opera Philadelphia's 2016-2017 Season. Composer Missy Mazzoli, a graduate of Opera Philadelphia's Composer in Residence program, sits down with her collaborators Royce Vavrek (librettist) and James Darrah (director) to discuss the task of adapting Lars von Trier's 1996 film for the operatic stage.

It's a compelling conversation about the nature of goodness, faith, and loyalty, providing a look into the creative process of these three talented artists. Pull up a stool, pour a glass of your favorite spirits, and listen in as Royce talks about the first time he mentioned the idea of adapting von Trier's film; why Missy initially said no to the idea; how James plans to recreate the lush landscape of Scotland in a chamber opera setting; and find out more about that mystery guy sitting at the bar and eavesdropping on the conversation.

Breaking the Waves, co-commissioned by Beth Morrison Projects, premieres Sept. 22-Oct. 1, 2016, at the Perelman Theater in the Kimmel Center for the Performing Arts.

Major support for Breaking the Waves has been provided by The Pew Center for Arts & Heritage and the William Penn Foundation.

Additional support is provided by the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, the Wallace Foundation, and OPERA America's Opera Grants for Female Composers program, supported by the Virginia B. Toulmin Foundation.

Additional commissioning support by Allen Freedman and Judith Brick Freedman.

Co-commission with Beth Morrison Projects

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