Jamie Barton Headlines The Atlanta Opera Premiere Of ‘Dead Man Walking’

By Francisco Salazar

The Atlanta Opera is set to present the company premiere of Jake Heggie and Terrence McNally’s “Dead Man Walking” in an original production General & Artistic Director Tomer Zvulun.

The new interpretation of the work, which is a co-production with the Israeli Opera, will star Jamie Barton in her role debut as Sister Helen Prejean, and Michael Mayes in his signature role of Joseph De Rocher. The two will be joined by Maria Zifchak, Wayne Tigges, Kevin Burdette, and Jay Hunter Morris.

Joseph Mechavich will conduct the work, which has become the most performed American opera of the 21st century.

In a press statement Zvulun stated, “I am excited about bringing this powerfully charged opera to Atlanta for the first time. We are especially thrilled about the all-star cast we have been able to assemble, with the homecoming of superstar Jamie Barton in her role debut as Sister Helen, the absolute quintessential ‘Dead Man Walking’ Michael Mayes, and house favorites Maria Zifchak, Wayne Tigges, Kevin Burdette, and Jay Hunter Morris. Jake Heggie has established himself as an emotional juggernaut in the operatic world and his most popular opera deserves to be seen on our main stage with this powerhouse ensemble of world-class singers.”

The work is set to make its Atlanta premiere on Feb. 2 and will be performed through the 10th.