New American Opera Previews, From Page to Stage promotes contemporary opera to New York audiences though the presentation of staged excerpts of new opera in development. Providing an important opportunity for new composers and librettists to view their work-in-progress with an audience, provides a valuable tool for developing a stage-worthy new work, before it reachesfull-scale production. Post performance audience talk-backs with the creative team and singers, moderated by WQXR Radio host, Midge Woolsey, provide important audience and professional feedback for the creators during the development phase. New American Opera Previews, From Page to Stage creates vital opportunities for young artists to perform in the developing scenes and to work with new writers and composers. This forum provides a natural bridge from academic training to the professional stage.

Your Host and Moderator

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Midge Woolsey, of WQXR and Public Television, has been a familiar face in New York City for two decades. She is best known for hosting local and national programming and fund-raising for Public Television. National programs include "The Three Tenors from Giants Stadium" and "The Three Tenors with James Levine". Midge has been the weekend announcer for WQXR, the classical station of the New York Times, since 1993. On both radio and television, she has interviewed such celebrities as Placido Domingo, Luciano Pavarotti, James Levine, Deborah Voigt, and Robert Merrill. Midge has also been involved with every aspect of the arts as a director, performer, project manager, and choreographer.

NEW AMERICA OPERA PREVIEWS: From Page to Stage 2019

In this time of critical social justice issues such as immigration, walls, the me-too movement and the rights of women and children around the world, the rights of indigenous people worldwide, and the global climate crisis and need for earth ethics, we are inspired by a search for freedom through the lens of three women in new opera and Lord Byron.

In this time of critical social justice issues such as immigration, walls, the me-too movement and the rights of women and children around the world, the rights of indigenous people worldwide, and the global climate crisis and need for earth ethics, we are inspired by a search for freedom through the lens of three women in new opera and Lord Byron.

 

FREEDOM

Three Powerful Women of New Opera....and Lord Byron


Angel of the Amazon
Composer/Librettist: Evan Mack
Sister Dorothy Stang: Tascha Anderson
An American nun, dedicates her life to gaining land rights for indigenous people in Brazil and protecting the Rainforest.
 
A Wake or a Wedding
Composer/Librettist: Richard Pearson Thomas
Ambrosia: Marie Anello
A seamstress in Montana, treated unfairly by her mistress, imagines the wonders of the world through the touch of her fabrics.
 
Anna Christie
Composer: Edward Thomas
Librettist: Joseph Masteroff
Based on the play by Eugene O’Neill
Anna Christie: Melanie Long

A survivor of sexual abuse and prostitution, Anna Christie fearlessly claims her power by facing her own emotional truth while confronting the father who abandoned her as a child.

Angel of the Amazon

A Wake or a Wedding

ANNA CHRISTIE

 

LORD BRYON

Composer: Virgil Thomson
Librettist: Jack Larson
Thomas Moore: Mark Watson
Lord Byron: Oswaldo Iraheta

Born in 1788, Lord Byron, an English poet and formidable satirist, rebelled all his life against social injustice. His radical political views led him to take up the cause of freedom, and in 1823 he went to Greece and fought for their independence, where he died at the age of 36. The opera opens with his family and friends sadly awaiting the arrival of his body for burial, as well as a statue of Byron being delivered as a gift.Thomas Moore, the poet and close friend of Byron, reflects on his memories of Byron. Time stops. Byron’s ghost appears, and he sings a satirical ode to the London he has not seen in seven years.
By arrangement with Southern Music Publishing Co., Inc., Publisher

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Our Creative Team
Nancy Rhodes, Stage Director
Richard Pearson Thomas, Music Director/Pianist
Angela Huff, Costume Designer 

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Our Composers and librettist

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NEW AMERICA OPERA PREVIEWS: From Page to Stage

Anna Christie

Music by Edward Thomas
Libretto by Joe Masteroff

March 12, 2017
at Greenfield Hall, Manhattan School of Music

A new music drama based on the Pulitzer Prize-winning sea play by Eugene O'Neill that explores the lost relationship of a woman and her father, and the sailor she falls in love with.

With an audience talk-back moderated by Midge Woolsey
(THIRTEEN/WNET and WQXR Radio)

 
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NEW AMERICA OPERA PREVIEWS: From Page to Stage

Blood of Angels: Act 2

March 13, 2016 at 2:30 pm
at Greenfield Hall, Manhattan School of Music

A dramatization of the 1960's Civil Rights Movement that still reverberates as strongly today as it did fifty years ago. This opera takes place during the political campaign of George C. Wallace who forgoes his beliefs in equality for his ambition of becoming President of the United States.

Featuring

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For more photos of the 2016 workshop, click here


NEW AMERICA OPERA PREVIEWS: From Page to Stage

Blood of Angels

An opera in progress by Richard Pearson Thomas

Directed by Nancy Rhodes
Conducted by Mara Waldman

Blood of Angels dramatizes the political life of George C. Wallace set against the backdrop of the Civil Rights Movement.

To be elected governor of Alabama, George Wallace discards his original belief in equality and embraces the language of segregation.  His rhetoric has disastrous effects, dramatized by the brutal beatings of The Children’s March and the deaths of four girls in the bombing of Birmingham’s 16th Street Baptist Church.

Cloaking his racist message as one of “law and order,” Wallace seeks the presidency, only to be gunned down by a would-be assassin.  Crippled and in constant pain, Wallace ultimately returns to the African-American community and begs their forgiveness.  They grant this forgiveness in the spirit of unity and consolation. 

(30-minute staged highlights for Page to Stage)
Sunday, March 15, 2015

Sunday, March 16, 2014


NEW AMERICA OPERA PREVIEWS: From Page to Stage

Deidre

 
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A Haunting Celtic Tale of a powerful man, an ardent lover, and a mysterious woman from the otherworld,in a mythological and psychological thriller.

 

Featuring award-winning Encompass Singers and Composer

Following the performance, Midge Woolsey of WQXR Radio moderated an onstage discussion with the Composer, Singers, and Musical Team.


NEW AMERICA OPERA PREVIEWS: From Page to Stage

The Astronaut's Tale

The Astronaut’s Tale traces a young man’s life from his first experience of loss, his dog killed by a car, the appearance of a mysterious Einstein-like guide, his youthful desire to become an astronaut, marriage, and the fulfillment of his ambition.

The setting is our own time with its confrontation of science and religion. The opera concludes with a meditation on the nature of the cosmos and our experience of life and death within. The Astronaut’s dream was to be in outer space, but our afterlife is in the inner space where we dream. 

Charles Fussell, Composer
Jack Larson, Librettist
Nancy Rhodes, Stage Director
Mara Waldman, Music Director/Conductor
Tony Bellomy, Pianist
Eric Fuqua, Stage Manager

CAST

Christopher Vettel (Narrator)
Eapen Leubner (Abel, known as Ab)
Brittany Palmer (Ann)
Frank Basile (Old Man, Peccavit, the Peddler)

Read more on The Astronaut's Tale page.


NEW AMERICA OPERA PREVIEWS: From Page to Stage

Angel of the Amazon

Music and Libretto by Evan Mack


March 14, 2010

NEW AMERICA OPERA PREVIEWS: From Page to Stage

The Theory of Everything

Music by John David Earnest
Libretto by Nancy Rhodes 

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More on The Theory of Everything.