Rhymes With Opera (L to R: Robert Maril, Elisabeth Halliday and Bonnie Lander) performing David Smooke’s Criminal Element at JACK Space in Brooklyn, July 11th, 2013–Photo courtesy of Regina DeLuise
Rhymes With Opera
An opera by David Smooke
Also featuring 12 one-minute operas by various composers
JACK, Brooklyn, NY
Thursday, July 11th, 2013
A small but full and dedicated sold-out audience filed into JACK Space in Brooklyn last night to witness the first performance of the fully-staged version of Criminal Element, a one-act chamber opera commissioned by Rhymes With Opera from Baltimore-based composer David Smooke originally in 2010, when it was being performed as a concert-only work in selected cities. Continue reading
Rhymes With Opera, an ensemble dedicated to commissioning and producing new operas in Baltimore and New York City, brings their first-ever revival to Brooklyn’s JACK Space on July 11, 2013 at 7:30pm, and Baltimore’s Station North Area 405 on July 13, 2013 at 8pm. This production includes a fully staged performance of David Smooke’s Criminal Element, a work that RWO commissioned from Smooke in 2010, and is scored for three singers and a string quartet.
Composer David Smooke calls Criminal Element a “non-opera” that was inspired by the story of outlaw French bank trader Jérôme Kerviel and his British counterpart Nicholas Leeson, told through a language invented by Smooke. Baltimore Sun critic Tim Smith described the 2011 concert version as “a highly creative, absorbing experience.” This new, fully staged production will exponentially increase the creativity quotient, incorporating the talents of several Baltimore artists. MICA faculty member Valeska Populoh is designing and co-directing the production, and is creating massive puppets that will tower over the singers as an integral scenic element throughout the work. Margaret Rorison of the Red Room Collective (video design) and David Crandall (lighting design and technical director) will join Populoh and Smooke on the production team. Rhymes With Opera’s trio of singers will be accompanied by a string quartet from Baltimore’s SONAR New Music Ensemble.
In addition to Criminal Element, RWO will premiere twelve one-minute “signature” operas by Judah Adashi, Jenny Beck, Sidney Boquiren, Joshua Bornfield, Nomi Epstein, Alexandra Gardner, Tim Hansen, Andrew Histand, Mark Lackey, Anna Meadors, Rachel Peters, and Ashley Wang. These brand-new operas were commissioned especially for this performance.
Click here for tickets/info or on the link at the bottom of this page.
David had a few minutes to speak about newly-staged puppet opera. Continue reading
Sequenza21 and Manhattan New Music Project present ACME in Concert
Joe’s Pub, NYC
October 25, 2011
Other than my highly-expensive coke and chocolate brownie (Thanks, Joe’s Pub food policy), the evening for the chamber group American Contemporary Music Ensemble (ACME) left me feeling much more assured and happy I was there to capture it. It was quite a crisp, vital program in the intimate setting of Joe’s Pub, a place that one associates more with indie rock, but these days there’s hardly a chasm between the two anyway. Continue reading