Username:
Password:


Forgot your password?
View Photo Credit  
Ausrine Stundyte as Cio-Cio-San, Elizabeth Janes as Butterfly’s child and Sarah Larsen as Suzuki in Seattle Opera's production of Puccini's Madama Butterfly. Photo by Elise Bakketun.
North American Works Directory Listing
The Emperor Jones
Louis Gruenberg
Kathleen de Jaffa
Tullio Serafin (Conductor)
Alexander Sanine (Production Manager)
Jo Mielziner (Set and Costume Designer)
Lawrence Tibbett (Brutus Jones)
Marek Windheim (Henry Smithers)
Pearl Besuner (An Old Native Woman)
Hemsley Winfield (Congo Witch-Doctor)
http://www.schirmer.com/Default.aspx?TabId=2420&State_2874=2&workId_2874=28551
January 07, 1933
Metropolitan Opera
Brutus Jones, an ex-Pullman porter, crapshooter, and escaped convict, is in the last days of his tyrannical reign over an unnamed island in the West Indies, where, for the past several years, he has ensconced himself as Emperor. As the curtain opens, his people are in rebellion against his cruelty. An off-stage chorus calls for his death and a low, ominous drumbeat is heard in the distance. There is an exchange between Jones and his underling, the cockney trader Smithers, in which Jones learns of the revolt against him. Despite the news, he puts on a pompous and carefree air, bragging to Smithers of the power he has gained since arriving on the island as a stowaway. He has convinced the natives that he can only be killed by a silver bullet, and, to reinforce this story, carries one around his neck as a charm. He tells Smithers that he plans to escape to Martinique with the money he has stolen from the natives. He has hidden some provisions in the jungle, and, resigning the job as Emperor, he leaves the palace to make his escape.

Jones, exhausted, lies in a clearing in the jungle. He has been unable to find any of his provisions, and a series of hallucinations from his past life emerge to haunt him while the jungle grows darker and the intensity of the drums increases. He sees a vision of a man he murdered in a crap game. He starts to run wildly through the jungle, shedding parts of his uniform. He then sees an image of a convict gang with a guard. A vision of a slave auction haunts him, and the auctioneer beckons to Jones to take his place on the block. Jones has fired his gun at all of these visions, and he is finally left with only his silver bullet. As daylight emerges, Jones is seen struggling and groping his way through the jungle. Finally, a witch doctor appears -- a terrifying sight -- and holding on to Jones, dances wildly about him. Soon others appear-soldiers and natives who have been hunting him-and Jones realizes that his time has come. "De silver bullet," he exclaims. He raises the gun to his head and fires. The opera comes to an end as Jones's body is borne off the stage.
Brutus Jones (bar)
Henry Smithers (t)
An Old Native Woman (s)
NY Herald Tribune, 1-8-33; The New York Times, 1-8-33; The New York Times, 1-15-33; Staats Zeitung, NY, 1-8-33; Il Progresso Italo-Americano; 1-8-33; New York Sun, 1-9-33; Wall Street Journal, 1-10-33; NY Evening Post, 1-14-33; The New Yorker, 1-14-33; Time, 1-16-33; Opera News, 4-79, p. 50; Musical America, 6-79, p. 24
01:40
Not Available
SATB
3 fl, 3 ob, 3 cl, 3 bsn - 4 hrn, 3 tpt, 3 tbn, tba - timp, perc - hp, pf, cel - str
Congo Witch-Doctor & other dancers
Challenged by his teacher Busoni to develop a new means of musical expression, Gruenberg incorporated jazz and black spirituals in his music. He was one of the earliest American composers to use jazz rhythms in large symphonic works. His opera The Emperor Jones attracted a great deal of attention because of its dramatic effects and novel devices, particularly in the use of percussion. Hailed as the first important American opera, the work received the David Bispham Memorial medal in 1932.
G. Schirmer, Inc.
http://www.schirmer.com/

Summer 2014 Magazine Issue
  • Summer Apprenticeships
  • Opera Tours for Board Members
  • My First Opera by Speight Jenkins
Contact Us
330 Seventh Avenue, New York, NY 10001
P 212-796-8620 • F 212-796-8621
Info@operaamerica.orgDirections
From Airport:
The easiest way to reach the OPERA America offices is to get a cab at the airport. Cost is $40-45
(not including tip).
  • JFK - Take the AirTrain ($5 - approx. 15 minutes) to the Jamaica Street Station and transfer to the Long Island Railroad (LIRR). Take the LIRR to Penn Station ($12 - approx. 35 minutes). See Penn Station directions below.
  • LaGuardia - Take the M60 Bus to the Hoyt Ave/31st Street. Get on the or Train and take that to 42nd/Times Square Station. Follow the Times Square Station directions below.
  • Newark - Take the New Jersey Transit train to Penn Station ($15 - approx. 45 min). See the Penn Station Directions below.

From Penn Station/Madison Square Garden:
Leave the station through the 7th Avenue/33rd Street exit and walk south for four blocks. The building is on
the right hand side.

From Grand Central Station:
Take the Train to the 42nd/Times Square station and transfer to the Train.
Take the Train to the 28th Street stop and walk north on 7th Avenue.
The building is on the same block as the train stop.

From 42nd Street/Times Square:
Take the Train to the 28th Street stop and walk north on 7th Avenue.
The building is on the same block as the train stop.

For more detailed directions, most up-to-date pricing or to specify a different starting location, please visit the
MTA Web site.