Saturday, April 27, 2024

MOR to Premiere New Heggie-Scheer Opera

Gene Scheer, Megan Marino, Jake Heggie, and Ryan McKinny (from the MOR Web page for the opera being discussed)

Next month will see the latest world premiere of an opera composed by Jake Heggie working with a libretto by Gene Scheer. This will be the fifth work by Heggie commissioned by Music of Remembrance (MOR), which is based in Seattle. The premiere performances will be given over the course of a three-city tour, beginning in Seattle on May 19, followed by a visit to San Francisco, and concluding with two performances in Chicago on May 25 and 26.

The title of the opera is Before It All Goes Dark. The narrative is a true story based on reporting by the Chicago journalist Howard Reich. It follows the life of a troubled Vietnam veteran who discovers his Jewish heritage on a journey to recover art stolen by the Nazis during World War II. The role of the protagonist will be sung by bass-baritone Ryan McKinny, and the cast will also include mezzo Megan Marino. Joseph Mechavich will conduct a chamber orchestra. Staging will be directed by Erich Parce.

The San Francisco performance will take place at the Presidio Theatre, located in the Presidio (of course) at 99 Moraga Avenue. It will begin at 7:30 p.m. on Wednesday, May 22. Tickets are being sold for $75, $55, and $40. The venue has created its own Web page for purchasing tickets, which includes an interactive “map” for seat selection. Tickets may also be purchased by calling 415-960-3949.

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