Wicked Creator Schwartz's First Opera, Séance on a Wet Afternoon, to Be Presented in January

News   Wicked Creator Schwartz's First Opera, Séance on a Wet Afternoon, to Be Presented in January
Broadway composer Stephen Schwartz's first opera, Séance on a Wet Afternoon, will receive a concert reading as part of American Opera Projects' First Chance program.

The development program will allow the creators of three new projects "to hear their works in front of a live audience for the first time," according to a press notice. The trio of works will be presented Jan. 18-20, 2008, at Brooklyn's South Oxford Space and Manhattan's Rose Studio of The Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center.

Based on the Mark McShane novel and Bryan Forbes screen adaptation, Séance on a Wet Afternoon is billed as "a psychological thriller about a spiritual medium who kidnaps a girl in order to gain fame by 'finding' her through her séances." The work marks the first opera by the composer-lyricist of Broadway's Wicked, Godspell and film's "Enchanted"; the latter features lyrics by Schwartz and music by Alan Menken. (The opera has been commissioned by Opera Santa Barbara — where it will enjoy its world premiere at the Granada Theatre in 2009.)

The casts for the three concert readings will feature soprano Lauren Flanigan as well as Caroline Worra, Michael Zegarski, Jessica Miller, Amy Van Roekel, Ory Brown, Daniel Neer, Lucas Richter, Grant Clarke, Daniel Hoy, Jeffrey Tucker, Michael Wade Lee, Joshua Bouchard, Garrett McClenahan and Katie Micha. AOP artistic director Steven Osgood will conduct. Charity Wicks accompanies on piano.

The other two works scheduled for the First Chance program are Conrad Cummings' The Golden Gate and Moni and Mina Yakim's Unruly Horses.

Tickets to the programs can be purchased by calling (718) 398-4024 or online at operaprojects.org.

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