Opera Philadelphia

American Repertoire Program

Opera Philadelphia launched the American Repertoire Program in 2011, committing to produce an American work in ten consecutive seasons and solidifying its role as a national leader in the creation of new works. In tandem with the launch of the nation’s first collaborative Composer in Residence Program, the American Repertoire Program is aimed at fostering a new generation of opera composers and telling authentically American stories. It is steered by the American Repertoire Council, a committed group of volunteer advisors overseen by operatic baritone, Nathan Gunn.

Breaking the Waves

September 2016
World Premiere

With music by former Composer in Residence Missy Mazzoli and a libretto by Royce Vavrek, based on the Academy Award-nominated film by Lars von Trier (Zentropa Entertainments3).

A co-commission with Beth Morrison Projects. 

Starring Kiera Duffy, John Moore, Eve Gigliotti, Patricia Schuman and Zachary James.

Cold Mountain

February 2016
East Coast Premiere*

With music by Pulitzer Prize-winning composer Jennifer Higdon and a libretto by Gene Scheer, based on the bestselling novel Cold Mountain by Charles Frazier.

A co-production with Santa Fe Opera, where it premiered in 2015 before making its East Coast Premiere at the Academy of Music.

Starring Nathan Gunn, Isabel Leonard, and Jay Hunter Morris.

Charlie Parker's YARDBIRD 

June 2015
World Premiere

By composer Daniel Schnyder with a libretto by Bridgette Wimberly. Part of the Aurora Series for Chamber Opera at the Perelman Theater.

Lawrence Brownlee stars as Charlie Parker, with Angela Brown as his mother, Addie Parker.


February 2015
East Coast Premiere*

Composed by Theodore Morrison, Professor of Music Emeritus at the University of Michigan, with a libretto by the composer and John Cox.

Co-produced with Santa Fe Opera. Starring David Daniels as Oscar Wilde, Heidi Stober, and William Burden

A Coffin In Egypt

June 2014
East Coast Premiere

By Ricky Ian Gordon with a libretto by Leonard Foglia.

Co-commissioned and co-produced with Houston Grand Opera and The Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts. Starring Frederica von Stade.

Silent Night

February 2013
East Coast Premiere

Winner of the 2012 Pulitzer Prize for Music, by composer Kevin Puts with a libretto by Mark Campbell

Co-produced with Minnesota Opera. Hailed as "a tautly paced and involving work" by The New York Times.  Starring Kelly Kaduce and William Burden.

Dark Sisters

June 2012

Music by Nico Muhly and a libretto by Stephen Karam. Co-commissioned with New York City's Gotham Chamber Opera and Music-Theatre Group. Performed as part of the Aurora Series at the Perelman Theater.

The November 2011 New York premiere was hailed by the Associated Press, which called it, "An intriguing new opera... Muhly and Karam  seem to have succeeded where many new operas fail."

* Indicates the composer's opera debut.

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