NYU Chamber Opera To Stage ‘The Old Maid and the Thief’ In Double Bill

By David Salazar

The New York University’s Chamber Opera will showcase a unique double bill on Oct. 25-27 at the Provincetown Playhouse.

The unique production will showcase a double bill of Gian Carlo Menotti’s “The Old Maid and the Thief” alongside Kurt Weill and Bertolt Brecht’s “Mahagonny-Songspiel.” The performance will feature members of NYU Steinhardt’s Classical Voice Program, including Justin Baptista, Carolyn Boulay, Christopher Fotis, Nicole Salamon, Andrea Ochoa, Benjamin Swanson, Shannon McClintock, Emily Ready, Abbey Kracker, Nicholas Van Cabral, Vineel Mahal, Alex McCarthy, Scott Murphee, Vethania Stavropoulos, Laura Owens, Geddy Warner, Marcus Herndon, and Scott Murphree. Jeremy Gill will conduct.

The production will be directed by Mike Scarola, who was the creative mind behind the pairing. When he joined the production, the Menotti opera was already in place. In his initial search for a partner work, Scarola was not particularly thrilled about his options.

“Initially, I wasn’t finding anything that I was happy with as I had set myself the challenge of continuing to tell the story of what happens to Laetitia and Bob after they get away with all of Miss Todd’s prized possessions at the end of ‘Old Maid,'” Scarola told OperaWire. “Then I got to the W’s. Suddenly I had found it: Kurt Weill and Bertolt Brecht’s ‘Mahagonny-Songspiel,’ a piece that is comprised of six musical numbers joined by musical interludes but doesn’t have an actual story line, thus giving me the opportunity to create whatever story I wanted to. The two pieces even had a shared character name.”