Sunday 4PM The Chrysalis 48: HIGH DRAMA

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hey hartlist

so how was your week/end? Did you miss me?

In case you don’t feel like reading much today, 1) This Sunday 4PMEDT, The Chrysalis returns with #48: HIGH DRAMA on FB and YT (why not subscribe and get a reminder?) I will (I hope) have just recovered from my 2nd shot and be delightfully scattered. 2) Tickets for comedian Liam McEneany’s MAY 8 *live in person* show at the Kraine are almost sold out but there are plenty of livestream tickets avail! Opening act: Me. You must be vaccinated to attend in person.

Carry on.

They say a picture is worth a thousand words, which is good as I’m having trouble finding ways to answer “How was it?”… ‘It’, in this case, being my trip to DC the first performance/production/filming of my first ever opera (libretto by me music by Amber Vistein) commissioned along with two other bite-size operas for the American Opera Initiative, and that’s probably half my allotted words right there (a familiar feeling when writing opera libretto,FYI). It was pretty overwhelming - first trip out of state in a year , first time in a room with other humans in a theatre in at least a year, first time meeting people in person I’ve been working with for a year, first opera, first time hearing words I wrote sung with a 13-piece orchestra, you get me. I learned SO MUCH; it was both a humbling and inspiring experience I will never forget. The other two pieces are gorgeous and you can watch them all for free online come June 1 (maybe before; unclear).

To sum up, it was a beautiful blur out of which emerge only small colorful details, like the fact that our Zoom afterparty featured a take-home cocktail (recipe & ingredients) tailored to each piece (ours was the “Jersey Devil” : vodka and black cherry soda *), the fact that an opera really starts with the Stage Manager saying “Maestro-?” to the (they really call him) Maestro, and the fact that I had the best croissant breakfast sandwich of my life at Tatte bakery; highly recommend. (It always comes back to food for me)

Other than that, my answer to “what’s the difference between musical theatre and opera?” has pretty much remained “Less talking, more singing” because it’s hard to articulate the other stuff. I will say, though, that I’ve learned to think about what qualified as what my collaborator calls “operatic AF”. Because opera does require high stakes, big feelings, and a commitment to Going There….maybe not the whole time (who wants that) but at some point; otherwise why would you need these big voices?

Is this even interesting?

What I’m saying is: this week on The Chrysalis, songs and stories of Going There. Big feelings, big gestures, big statements. No there will be no opera. YEs, there will be HIGH DRAMA. See you there.


*confession I just drank the soda straight from the bottle