Composer/Pianist Felix Jarrar to Present Excerpted Virtual Concert Production of ‘The Fall of the House of Usher’

By Chris Ruel

To mark the fifth anniversary of composer/pianist Felix Jarrar’s second opera, “The Fall of the House of Usher,” Jarrar, will present production excerpts in concert form on Friday, March 26 at 7:00 P.M.

The concert will stream on the composer’s YouTube channel. Billed as a “snapshot” of the opera, the concert features soprano Caroline Spaeth as Lady Madeline Usher, tenor Taka Komagata as The Friend, and baritone Joshua Scheid as Roderick Usher.

“The Fall of the House of Usher” was a breakthrough for the prolific young composer whose works have been featured at Symphony Space, (le) poisson rouge, BAM’s Fisher Hillman Studio, and Carnegie Hall’s Weill Recital Hall. International artists from the Metropolitan Opera, the Atlantic Music Festival Orchestra, and the duo Unassisted Fold have performed his compositions. To date, Jarrar has written approximately 119 works, including 10 operas.

The opera based on the eponymous story by Edgar Allan Poe received its world premiere at Marlboro College on March 28, 2016, in a production by librettist/lyricist, and stage director Bea Goodwin, a frequent collaborator of Jarrar’s. The show toured off-Broadway at The DiMenna Center for Classical Music that April. The final mad scene, expertly crafted by Goodwin, was revived during Tania Leon’s Composers Now Festival in 2018, and excerpted arias have become a staple of Jarrar’s showcases.