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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
Orpheus Descending
Bruce Saylor
J.D. McClatchy
Rhoda Levine, Stage Director; Stewart Robinson, Conductor; Marie Anne Chiment, Set Designer
Original cast: Valentine Xavier, Victor Benedetti; Lady Torrance, Juliana Rambaldi; Jabe Torrance, Stephen Morscheck; Carol Cutrere, Terese Fedea; Vee Talbot, Emily Magee; Beulah, Natalie Arduino; Dolly, Kimberly Jones; Sheriff Talbott, Stephen Powell; David Cutrere, Gary Martin; Nurse, Gwendolyn Brown
June 10, 1994
Lyric Opera of Chicago
The story is set in the general drygoods store of a small Southern town. Val, a reformed hustler searching for a new life, wanders into the dark, depressing world of Lady, the daughter of an Italian immigrant and wife of Jabe, the store owner. Lady longs to be saved from the memory of her father's fiery murder by local vigilantes, from an earlier affair and subsequent abortion, and from her empty marriage to the menacing, cancer-ridden Jabe. Val comes to work and lives in the store. He and Lady fall in love. Val's wild beauty stirs up other women in the town, including the seductive Carol, who tries to warn him of the mortal danger he courts, and the visionary Vee, wife of the local sheriff. From his deathbed, Jabe discovers Lady's infidelity. Lady herself learns by accident that Jabe had been part of the gang that killed her father and then learns that she is pregnant by Val. In the midst of her furious exaltation, Jabe descends and shoots her. The sheriff and his cronies capture Val and burn him to death. Carol dons Val's snakeskin jacket, a symbol of the continuing cycle of life
Opera News, November 1994; Opera Canada, Richard Covello, Fall 1994; The New Yorker, Paul Griffiths, 7-10-94; The Village Voice, Leighton Kerner, 7-5-94; Opera News, Deborah Seabury Holloway, June 1994; Pioneer Press, Dorothy Andries, 6-16-94; The New York Times, Alex Ross, 6-13-94; Chicago Sun-Times, Wynne Delacoma, 6-12-94; Chicago Tribune, John von Rhein, 6-12-94; The Reader, Ted Shein, 6-10-94; Opera Monthly, Bruce-Michael Gelbert, May-June 1994; Chicago Daily Herald, Bill Gowen, 5-5-94
Not Available
4 woodwinds, 6 brass, 9 str, hrp, 2 perc
Tonal; lyrical; some very chromatic parts; dark, sometimes brooding music; use of leifmotifs
Lyric Opera of Chicago
Schedule of Performances Listings
Orpheus Descending (Saylor)
Friday, June 10, 1994 - Lyric Opera of Chicago

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