February 18, 21, 24, 26
Pittsburgh Opera continues its 78th season with a daring, moving and highly topical story. Making its Pennsylvania premiere, As One showcases the powerful journey of a transgender protagonist uniquely told through two voices—in a work that’s groundbreaking for the medium of opera.
Running for just four nights at Pittsburgh Opera’s George R. White Studio headquarters in the Strip, the work was created by composer Laura Kaminsky and librettists Mark Campbell and Kimberly Reed. The contemporary chamber opera is very loosely based on some life experiences of Reed, who is acclaimed for her work as producer and director of the award-winning 2008 documentary, Prodigal Sons.
Performed by a baritone and a mezzo-soprano with a string quartet conducted by James Lesniak, As One chronicles the experiences of Hannah—from growing up in small-town America and having difficulties with her family, to attending college on the West Coast, and traveling to Norway.
With a mix of humor, empathy and honesty, the eloquent work uses opera to share Hannah’s powerful path toward self-awareness, as she works to reconcile divisions between her interior and exterior realities and ultimately discovers “the larger trans community” and her true identity.
Starring as Hannah are Pittsburgh Opera’s Resident Artists Brian Vu and Taylor Raven. Pittsburgh audiences will be the first in the state to experience the work, which premiered at NYC’s BAM Fisher Center 2014.
On February 18, don’t miss the opera’s “Meet the Creators” event with Kaminsky, Campbell and Reed, who will give a special pre-show talk at 7 p.m. prior to the opening night performance.
Looking for more events? Check out our 11 Pittsburgh events not to miss in February, Top 10 family events in Pittsburgh this February and our 17 can’t-miss Pittsburgh concerts in 2017 feature stories.