World Premiere of Christopher Cerrone's In a Grove at Pittsburgh Opera
Feb. 16, 2022
Antony Walker conducts and Mary Birnbaum directs the world premiere of composer Christopher Cerrone and librettist Stephanie Fleischmann's new opera, In a Grove, based on the short story by Ryūnosuke Akutagawa, at Pittsburgh Opera. Performances run from February 19-March 3.
Sited within a ghost forest in the Pacific Northwest in 1922, the opera unfolds within a barren, haunted landscape devastated by wildfire. Into a terrain of broken dreams, marred by violence and obfuscated by smoke, comes a young woman who upends conventional notions of gender and narratives of victimhood, claiming agency for herself. Transpiring within a frontier territory riven by class struggle and fear of the other, this feminist retelling of Akutagawa’s tale manifests a world in which the environment is under siege, and wildly veering personal truths vie with absolute fact, shattering what we think we know.
In a Grove was commissioned by the Los Angeles Opera, with production support from Pittsburgh Opera, and with additional creative and development support provided by Metropolis Ensemble, Raulee Marcus and Steven Block. Performances at Los Angeles Opera are scheduled to take place in the 2023/24 season. Pittsburgh Opera's production of In a Grove is sponsored in part by the Allen R. and Judy Brick Freedman Venture Fund for Opera.
(Trailer - In a Grove at Pittsburgh Opera)
To learn more about Christopher Cerrone, visit: schott-music.com and psnymusic.com.
In a Grove (2017)
an opera in seven testimonies
libretto (Eng) by Stephanie Fleischmann
based on a short story by Ryūnosuke Akutagawa (Marie Oka, translator)
Woodcutter/Man - baritone; Priest/Medium - countertenor;
Policeman/Bandit - tenor; Old Woman/Woman - soprano
Fl, Cl, Horn in F, 2 Perc, Harp, Piano/Keyboard, Viola, Cello, Electronics/Sound Designer