Opera Philadelphia

We Need to Talk

World Premiere
Music by Caroline Shaw
Poem by Anne Carson

Pulitzer Prize-winning composer Caroline Shaw brings her complex, layered sound world to the Opera Philadelphia Channel with We Need to Talk, based on a poem by celebrated poet Anne Carson. Soprano Ariadne Greif stars as a young woman in conversation with herself, reminiscent of our isolated days of quarantine: days of frustration, joy, and grief. This conversation occurs between Greif—praised for her"luminous, expressive voice"(New York Times)—and a choral track featuring Shaw’s own voice and a recitation of the poem by Carson herself.

The new film, by award-winning director Maureen Towey and Philadelphia-based Four/Ten Media, creates an environment filled with tension and energy, amplified by Shaw’s inclusion of electronic composition and sampling of old film scores. We Need to Talk challenges conventional notions about the definition of opera— while rooted in the hallmark of the operatic form: strong musical storytelling—making it an ideal fourth and final installment of the Digital Commissions Series.

Three Ways to Watch: Available on-demand starting April 16, with a Season Pass or Digital Commissions Bundle until May 31, 2021, or with a seven-day rental.

Watch Play

We Need to Talk video

MapOpera Philadelphia Channel

Available on-demand with a Season Pass or Digital Commissions Bundle until May 31, 2021, or with a seven-day rental.

Running time: 10 minutes

The Digital Commissions Series is underwritten by Mr. Allen D. Black and Mr. R. Randolph Apgar.

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