LIVE OAK THEATRE, BERKELEY, JUNE 17-20, 2010

X AT THE HEART OF AMERICA / X IN THE SOUL OF EUROPE AND BEYOND

Goat Hall Productions / San Francisco Cabaret Opera celebrates its 10th Annual Fresh Voices Festival of New Works 2010 with four evenings (two programs) of real-life stories of loneliness and alienation, the spirit of adventure and the will to survive (America) and dark re-creations of old tales with new twists (Europe and Beyond).

Ten fully-staged short operas will Xplore: an erotic transformation in Hungary; starving artists in a sideshow in Czechoslovakia; a pioneer woman in Nebraska driven mad by loneliness; an Xpresident disintegrating in America. And more!

Program A (June 17 and 19, 8pm)
X at the Heart of America
Featuring the WORLD PREMIERE of *Trifles, John G. Bilotta/John F. McGrew
(from the story and play by Susan Glaspell)
George Bush: The Last 100 Days, Chris Whittaker
Life is Fine, Edward Knight/Langston Hughes
X in the Soul of Europe and Beyond
**The Bloody Chamber, Daniel Felsenfeld/Elizabeth Isadora Gold
Job: a Masque, by Mark Alburger

Program B (June 18, 8 pm and June 20, 7 pm)
X in the Soul of Europe and Beyond
The Hunger Art, Jeff Myers/Royce Vavrek
Medea Alone, David Garner
Theresa Kren, Mark Narins
X at the Heart of America
Letter from Linda, Alden Jenks/Frank Polite
Sutter Creek, Robert Denham

WHEN:

One Weekend Only: June 17-20, 2010
Thursday, June 17 – 8 pm
Friday, June 18 – 8 pm
Saturday, June 19 – 8 pm
Sunday, June 20 – 7 pm

WHERE:

Live Oak Theatre, 1301 Shattuck Ave., Berkeley (above Rose Street)

TICKETS:

Advance tickets: $20 general admission/$15 seniors/students
Tickets at door: $25 general admission/$20 seniors/students
Reserve tickets online @ www.goathall.org or call 415-289-6877

MORE INFORMATION:

Composers: Ten composers, two from New York, one from Pennsylvania, one from Okalahoma, and six local composers: Mark Alburger, John G. Bilotta, Robert Denham, David Garner, Alden Jenks, Mark Narins

Artistic Director: Harriet March Page
Pianists: Hadley McCarroll, Keisuke Nakagoshi
Stage Directors: Mark Alburger, Meghan Dibble, Ross Halper, Harriet March Page
Conductors: Martha Stoddard, Hadley McCarroll, Keisuke Nakagoshi
Lighting Designer: Delayne Medoff

PLUS:

Twenty-two amazing and brave local professional singers, including Eliza OMalley, Jo Vincent Parks, Indre Viskontas, Raina Simons, Michael Desnoyers, Nathaniel Marken, Maria Mikheyenko, Katherine Howell, Justin Marsh and Meghan Dibble.

** The Bloody Chamber – Libretto by Elizabeth Isadora Gold, adapted from the novella by Angela Carter.”

*Trifles is sponsored in part through Subito, the quick advancement grant program of the San Francisco Bay Area Chapter of the American Composers Forum.

MORE ABOUT TRIFLES , JOHN G. BILOTTA, COMPOSER

The Susan Glaspell Society has invited the composer to discuss the operatic setting of the play at the 20th Annual American Literature Conference in late May, 2010. Members of the Society and the ALA Conference will attend an open rehearsal of the opera during the conference. This production is also linking up with the public schools, where Susan Glaspell’s story is still read, and the composer will be speaking with students as part of their study unit on “A Jury of Her Peers”.

The Susan Glaspell Society was formed in 2003, following a year of exciting Glaspell conference panels at the American Theatre and Drama Society section of the American Literature Association Conference in Boston and at the Twentieth Century Literature Conference in Louisville. The SG Society reflects the continued growth of Glaspell scholarship as more and more academics, scholars, theatre professionals, and general readers realize that Glaspell is a major American woman writer whose remarkable body of work — drama, journalism, short fiction, and novels — has been too long overlooked.

Born in Davenport, Iowa, in 1876, Susan Glaspell rebelled against society’s expectations and, rather than passively wait for a husband to appear, went to Drake University in Des Moines, graduating in June of 1899, and then worked as a reporter for the Des Moines Daily News, where she covered the murder trial of a farmwife accused of murdering her husband, the murder on which “Trifles” is based. One of the most frequently performed one-act plays in schools, colleges, and community theaters, “Trifles” has also been filmed no fewer than five times, including a television adaptation by Alfred Hitchcock.

To most readers Susan Glaspell (1876-1948) is still known primarily as the author of “Trifles,” the frequently anthologized, classic feminist play about two women’s secret discovery of a wife’s murder of her husband, or the short-story “A Jury of Her Peers,” a re-writing of that piece. But Glaspell wrote over fifty short stories, nine novels, fourteen plays, and one biography. In 1931 she was awarded the Pulitzer Prize for her play “Alison’s House.” Glaspell was the co-founder of the Provincetown Players (1916-1922) with her husband George Cram Cook.

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