Experiments In Opera Unveils 2019-20 Season, Including ‘Writers’ Room Opera’

By David Salazar

The New York City based Experiments in Opera has unveiled its 2019-20 season.

“The 2019-2020 Season is our ninth year of programming adventurous, funny and intimate new opera,” stated the company’s composers-leaders Aaron Siegel, Jason Cady, and Kamala Sankaram in a press release. “We are delighted to partner with several of New York City’s preeminent live performance organizations to expand the reach of our work with composers and other opera-makers… Our community of creative artists has something significant to say and we remain dedicated to bringing these new voices and visions to life.”

The season kicks off with the world premiere of Kamala Sankaram and Rob Handel’s “Looking At You,” a techno-noir opera about the erosion of individual privacy in a digitized world. The work will be created in association with HERE and Opera on Tap at 145 Sixth Avenue. The production will be directed by Kristin Marting with Samuel McCoy conducting.

Performance Dates: Sept. 6-21, 2019

In November, the company moves to the Baryshnikov Arts Center for “Rainbird,” an opera by Aaron Siegel with a libretto by Mallory Catlett, who will also direct. The work will feature performances by Gelsey Bell, Justin Hicks, Anais Maviel, Dave Ruder, Andie Springer, and Matt Evans.

Performance Date: Nov. 15, 2019 

The company will also create “The Writers’ Room Opera,” a massive undertaking in which the company will bring together a wide range of playwrights, storytellers, and librettists to create a large-scale opera. The process will take place over two years and the final result will be a three-part opera with 10 individual episodes written by a different librettist/composer team.

The creators will include Jason Cady, Adrienne Danrich, Lauren D’Errico, Krista Knight, Jerry Lieblich, Jerome Parker, Kamala Sankaram, and Aaron Siegel. There will be a workshop at the Flea Theater.

Workshop Dates: March 4-5, 2020

“Compositions No. 279-283” by Anthony Braxton and Rob Reese will be showcased at The Flea Theater with such artists as Nate Wooley and Ingrid Laubrock, among others.

Performance Dates: March 26-28, 2020