Recent Press

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October 25, 2017 - The State Press
ASU BRINGS HALLOWEEN SHOW TO THE STAGE
Just in time for Halloween, an ear-catching presentation of “The Halloween Tree” is centerstage at the ASU Kerr Cultural Center. “The Halloween Tree” is based on Ray Bradbury’s novella of the same name. The opera adaptation was commissioned by the American Lyric Theater (ALT) with librettist Tony Asaro and composer Theo Popov. “It’s quite a big process moving a children's novella on to the operatic stage,” Popov said. “We had to work out a lot of details … figure out the pacing, outline and characters.” READ MORE

August 21, 2017 - Broadway World
BWW CLASSICAL WORLD: SEVEN ARTISTS SELECTED FOR 10TH ANNIVERSARY OF AMERICAN LYRIC THEATER'S COMPOSER LIBRETTIST DEVELOPMENT PROGRAM
Lawrence Edelson, Founder and Producing Artistic Director of American Lyric Theater (ALT), announced today that three composers, three librettists, and one dramaturg have been selected as Resident Artists to participate in the tenth anniversary season of the company's nationally acclaimed Composer Librettist Development Program (CLDP). The artists selected for this prestigious residency and training program are composers Shuying Li, Andy Tierstein, and Liliya Ugay; librettists Lorene Cary, Julian Crouch, and Lila Palmer; and dramaturg Antigoni Gaitana. "We are thrilled to celebrate the tenth anniversary of our flagship program, the CLDP, with such an extraordinary group of artists," said Edelson. READ MORE

June 1, 2017 - Operawire
HIGH NOTES: PRIDE MONTH 2017: A LOOK AT THE LGBT OPERAS IN HISTORY
June marks the start of Pride Month, a month dedicated to commemorating the Stonewall riots, which occurred at the end of June 1969. As a result, many pride events occur to honor the achievements of LGBT individuals. This month OperaWire will also dedicate a section to honoring LGBT individuals, operas, and achievements. It is our goal to bring visibility to works that have long been neglected and that need to be brought to the forefront and which showcase underrepresented individuals. READ MORE

May 18, 2017 - Wilson Center
ARTISTIC VISIONARIES AND COMMUNITY CREATORS: LAWRENCE EDELSON AND OPERA
Opera producer Lawrence Edelson and composer/librettist Mark Adamo had been enjoying a pleasant enough summer in 2002 as they worked away on a production of Adamo’s 1998 opera “Little Women” at Cooperstown, New York’s Glimmerglass Opera. The production was going well and the weather in New York’s Finger Lakes district had remained comfortable, if a bit wet at times. Still, breaks now and then were welcomed so, in need of an interlude in the mission of bringing an opera to the stage, they set off for drinks. Sometime later in this century, that particular cocktail hour may be remembered as recharting the course of American opera. As Edelson and Adamo settled in they began to chat about how so many programs existed to help the sorts of younger singers performing at Glimmerglass. Nevertheless, very little systematic support existed for mentoring those who wanted to write operas as Adamo had been doing to critical and audience acclaim. READ MORE

May 4, 2017 - Broadway World
BWW OPERAVIEW: A LOOK INTO THE KENNEDYS, GHOSTS AND HOLOCAUST SURVIVORS AT ALT ALUMNI CONCERT AT THE MORGAN LIBRARY
Baritone Joseph Lattanzi and mezzo Laura Krumm didn't originate at the roles of Jack and Jackie Kennedy when JFK--the new opera by David T. Little and Royce Vavrek--premiered in Fort Worth a year ago. Neither did Heather Johnson as Jackie O nor Jessica James as the maid Clara (and other roles). But they certainly owned them in the excerpts presented in the most daring of the four excellent works represented in the "ALT Alumni: Composers and Librettists in Concert" in the Gilder Lehrman Hall at New York's Morgan Library & Museum last week. READ MORE

May 1, 2017 - Broadway World
BWW WORLD: AMERICAN LYRIC THEATER ANNOUNCES APPOINTMENT OF NEW EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR DAVID RUBEO
American Lyric Theater (ALT) announces the appointment of David Rubeo as new Executive Director, effective May 1, 2017. "David Rubeo comes to ALT with more than twenty-five years' experience in New York's non-profit sector, primarily in classical music and the performing arts," said ALT's Founder and Producing Artistic Director Lawrence Edelson. "I have admired David's work for many years, and am thrilled to have him join ALT's leadership team. As we look forward to the 10th Anniversary of our Composer Librettist Development Program this fall, David's experience and passion will help position ALT both for growth and exciting new initiatives that will deepen our service to composers, librettists and the opera field." READ MORE

April 21, 2017 - Hollywood Soapbox
INTERVIEW: AMERICAN LYRIC THEATER, MORGAN LIBRARY TO SHOWCASE BEST OF NEW OPERA
Excerpts from several new operas will be on display as part of American Lyric Theater and The Morgan Library & Museum’s special showcase of ALT Alumni: Composers & Librettists in Concert, set to take place Sunday, April 23 at 3 p.m. at the Morgan’s Gilder Lehrman Hall on Madison Avenue in New York City. Audiences can look forward to hearing the work of David T. Little and Royce Vavrek (JFK), Dave Hanlon and Stephanie Fleischmann (After the Storm), Gerald Cohen and Deborah Brevoort (Steal a Pencil for Me), and Clint Borzoni and John de los Santos (The Copper Queen). READ MORE

April 3, 2017 - The Salt Lake Tribune
REVIEW: "THE LONG WALK" AN INSPIRING JOURNEY INTO AN IRAQ WAR VETERAN'S REALITY
Utah Opera took a big step outside the proverbial box this weekend with two special performances of "The Long Walk," Jeremy Howard Beck and Stephanie Fleischmann's chamber opera based on a memoir by Iraq War veteran Brian Castner, in the intimate Jeanné Wagner Theatre. It's a painful but important, and ultimately inspiring, story. READ MORE

March 29, 2017 - Salt Lake City Weekly
UNFAMILIAR ARIAS; THE LONG WALK TURNS ONE SOLDIER'S IRAQ WAR EXPERIENCE INTO CONTEMPORARY OPERA
In 2015, Brian Castner wrote for the online magazine Literary Hub about the experience of having his memoir, The Long Walk, commissioned as an opera by New York's American Lyric Theater: "It was like winning a vacation to a country you've never thought of visiting, like Uruguay or Botswana." Much about the origin of The Long Walk as an opera seems improbable, even as Utah Opera gives it its second-ever production. READ MORE

March 21, 2017 — Huffington Post
STAGE DOOR: SHERLOCK HOLMES AND THE CASE OF THE FALLEN GIANT
As any Sherlock Holmes fan knows, since his debut in the pages of The Strand Magazine over a 130 years ago, audiences worldwide have been hooked on the world’s first consulting detective. His deductive and intellectual powers are striking — and a marketing dream. That may explain the varied and compelling incarnations in print, theater, TV and film, not to mention comics, radio and video games. Indeed, in the recent Sherlock, a coproduction of the BBC and WGBH Boston, creators adapted his techniques to the 21st century. As the inimitable Baker Street sleuth, Benedict Cumberbatch secured a new generation of fans. Now the famed crime fighter is making his opera debut: March 26, 3 p.m at Merkin Hall on Manhattan’s Upper West Side. The American Lyric Theater, a company that focuses on helping composers and librettists develop new works, will stage Sherlock Holmes and the Case of the Fallen Giant. READ MORE

January 19, 2017 — Broadway World
BWW OPERAVIEW: A FUNNY THING - OR NOT - HAPPENED ON THE WAY TO THE OPERA HOUSE
What's new in opera? Everything you can imagine--and much that you couldn't conceive of, all in the space of a few days in New York. While TURING is not yet completed, last week's performance at Merkin Concert Hall presented by ALT, under Lawrence Edelson, which commissioned the work, proved that it's rapidly moving in that direction. Turing's story has become familiar through its film treatment, THE IMITATION GAME, with Benedict Cumberbatch and Kiera Knightly, and various other incarnations, but the opera by Justine Chen and David Simpatico stands in no one's shadow. READ MORE

January 11, 2017 — The Daily Beast
INSIDE THE OPERA ABOUT ALAN TURING, CODEBREAKER AND LGBT HERO 
Alan Turing, the gay mathematical genius who broke the Nazi Enigma Code in World War II and who was chemically castrated after being convicted of “gross indecency” in 1952, is the subject of a new opera which will have its first NYC concert performance this Thursday, Jan. 12. The Life and Death(s) of Alan Turing, composed by Justine Chen with a libretto by David Simpatico, is the first full-scale opera about Turing’s life and hopes to do justice to Turing’s story and especially his sexuality. READ MORE

January 8, 2017 — NY Theatre Guide
OPERA NEWS: 'THE LIFE AND DEATH(S) OF ALAN TURING' AT MERKIN CONCERT HALL
“Great operas don’t just happen” is the mantra of the American Lyric Theatre, a.k.a. ALT.  For ALT, opera is a viable, inventive art form created by collaboration. On Thursday, January 12th, ALT in partnership with the MasterVoices chorus presented “The Life and Death(s) of Alan Turing,” with music by Justine F. Chen and libretto by David Simpatico. As ALT’s Founder/Producing Artistic Director Lawrence Edelson explained to the Merkin Concert Hall audience, this first public performance is the latest stage in the workshop process. READ MORE

May 2016 — Opera News
REVIEW: AMERICAN LYRIC THEATER ALUMNI COMPOSERS AND LIBRETTIST IN CONCERT, 2/7/16
On February 7, Brooklyn audiences got a sneak preview at National Sawdust of three selections from the long-awaited opera Breaking the Waves, subsequently announced as the opener of Opera Philadelphia’s 2016–17 season. Composer Missy Mazzoli and librettist Royce Vavrek were both present, and both espoused their admiration for the disturbing source film, by Lars von Trier. The first excerpt, “Golden Heart,” was a lyrical showcase, sung strongly and with feeling by mezzo Eve Gigliotti, this concert’s MVP; she was as convincing as a young Isle of Skye widow as she would later be as a Jewish grandmother—and any part in between. READ MORE

April 25, 2016 — The New York Times
FORT WORTH OPERA'S 'BURIED ALIVE' AND 'EMBEDDED' CONJURE POE'S DARK TERRAIN
There have been ups and downs on the way to Fort Worth Opera’s 70th-anniversary season. In 2007, grappling with financial challenges, the company decided to concentrate its offerings in a festival format, with three or four productions presented during a month or so in the spring. This year’s festival opened here on Saturday with the premiere of “JFK,” an ambitious opera by the composer David T. Little and the librettist Royce Vavrek. Sunday afternoon brought another adventurous offering: a double bill of recent one-act chamber operas. The 475-seat W. E. Scott Theater at the Fort Worth Community Arts Center proved an ideally intimate space for these modern-day spins on two stories by Edgar Allan Poe, commissioned as part of American Lyric Theater’s Poe Project. READ MORE

April 21, 2016 — Star-Telegram
OPERA 'EMBEDDED' DEALS WITH ISSUES OF AGEISM, SEXISM
What really scares you? That was the central question put before the creators of Buried Alive / Embedded, two new, one-act operas based on Edgar Allan Poe stories, which will receive their regional premieres at Scott Theatre beginning Sunday as part of Fort Worth Opera’s 2016 festival. READ MORE

April 15, 2016 — Broadway World
FORT WORTH OPERA'S 'JFK,' THE WORLD OF CONTEMPORARY OPERA, & AMERICAN LYRIC THEATER'S LAWRENCE EDELSON
The premiere of JFK in Fort Worth on April 23 is a big step forward for composer David T. Little and librettist Royce Vavrek--who made a splash in contemporary opera circles with their post-apocalyptic DOG DAYS--as their first "grand" opera. It's also a major leap for American Lyric Theater (ALT), and its founder and artistic director, Lawrence Edelson, which co-commissioned the work with the Fort Worth Opera. READ MORE

April 13, 2016 — The New York Times
'JFK' ENVISIONS OPERATIC ENDING FOR CAMELOT
We learn about it. We might relate to it personally, recalling where we were when we heard about it. We could even have a theory about it. More words have probably been printed about the assassination of President John F. Kennedy, Vincent Bugliosi wrote in “Reclaiming History,” “than any other single, one-day event in world history.” READ MORE

March 29, 2016 — The Daily Beast
FIRST HAMILTON THE MUSICAL, NOW JFK THE OPERA
The creators of JFK, a new opera about Jack Kennedy’s assassination, hope that their ‘cosmic’ work brings opera to a new young audience. READ MORE

March 2016 — Opera News
NIGHT ON EARTH
Next month, Fort Worth Opera gives the world premiere of JFK, David T. Little and Royce Vavrek’s exploration of the president’s final hours and the tragedy that continues to haunt us. READ MORE

February 2016 — Opera News
REVIEW: AMERICAN LYRIC THEATER ALUMNI COMPOSERS AND LIBRETTIST IN CONCERT, 11/15/15
New York City has an opera problem. Those of us who live here are lucky to have the world-class work done by the Met, but that house presents a limited number of new works, including nothing this season written after 1935, and no other smaller company really fills in the void. You can read, in the pages of OPERA NEWS, about the myriad new operas performed around the country, but they rarely make it to the country’s opera capital; sometimes you have to hop a bus to Philadelphia just to hear a work like Silent Night. That’s why this great concert on November 15, presented by American Lyric Theater (which mentors composers and librettists, including almost all of the ones heard here), was especially welcome—it offered New Yorkers the rare opportunity to hear excerpts of what audiences in Houston, St. Louis, Los Angeles and Saratoga Springs have already heard—fantastic opera written by living young composers! READ MORE