BREAKING NEWS: CHELSEA OPERA TO PREMIERE THE MARK OF CAIN!
Chelsea Opera is pleased to announce the upcoming world premiere of:
The Mark of Cain, music by composer Matthew Harris and libretto by Terry Quinn. The one-act opera, loosely based on the biblical story of Cain and Abel, is for six soloists, chorus and chamber orchestra. The premiere will take place November 8, 9 and 10, 2012. The company looks forward to presenting this work by the team of Harris and Quinn.
Meet Matthew Harris
Matthew Harris returns to Chelsea Opera where his cantata for chorus and orchestra, A Child’s Christmas in Wales, was presented in December 2011.
His three-act opera, Tess, was performed in part at New York City Opera’s VOX series and by Lake George Opera Festival, and his monodrama As You Choose was produced at the Southern Theater in St. Paul.
His orchestral works have been played by Minnesota, Houston and Florida Symphony Orchestras; chamber works by Lark Quartet, League of Composers/ISCM and Montage Music Society of Boston; and choral works by Phoenix Chorale, Santa Fe Desert Chorale and Western Wind at venues such as the Kennedy Center and Carnegie Hall.
G. Schirmer and C. F. Peters publish his scores, and Albany, Chandos, Cedille and MSR Classics represent him on disc. Commissions have come from American Composers Forum, Amuse, Aspen Music Festival, Modesto Symphony Orchestra, Verdehr Trio and Voce Vocal Ensemble.
He has been awarded fellowships by the Fromm Music Foundation, New York Foundation for the Arts, MacDowell, Meet The Composer, National Endowment for the Arts (twice), Tanglewood and Yaddo. ASCAP, BMI, Chautauqua Chamber Singers, Diva Complex, Georges Enesco Foundation, Musicians Accord, National Association of Composers and Society for New Music have awarded him prizes in composition.
Mr. Harris has taught at Fordham University and Kingsborough College (CUNY), and currently lives in New York City.
Meet Terry Quinn
Terry Quinn is the author of two novels, a biography and a volume of poetry. His short stories, memoir pieces and plays have appeared in many literary journals and national magazines. He has written, directed and performed in numerous dramas and comedies produced on stages in New York City, England, France, Holland and Germany, and on National Public Radio. With George Plimpton, he co-authored One Sunday at the Fitzgeralds and Zelda, Scott and Ernest – the latter having featured Norman Mailer as Ernest Hemingway in the premiere performance. He also wrote the book, lyrics and music for two music theater works including Rasputin. A volume of his poetry, Mad for Newyorktown, (published by Straw House Press) has been set to music by Gary Fagin.
Two chamber operas for which he wrote the librettos have received seven productions, including world premiere performances at the 92nd Street Y’s Kaufmann Concert Hall in New York City (Hester Prynne at Death, with music by Stephen Paulus), and The Concertgebouw in Amsterdam (John Adams in Amsterdam: A Song for Abigail, with music by Gary Fagin). A dramatic song cycle, titled A Distant Love: Songs of John and Abigail Adams, for which he wrote the libretto (score by Gary Fagin), had a three-performance world premiere at the Brooklyn Historical Society in the fall of 2009 and will receive its Manhattan premiere at Chelsea Opera in June 2013. Mr. Quinn is collaborating with composer Stephen Paulus on a full-length opera titled The Birthmark which will have its world premiere with Chelsea Opera in November 2013. He is also completing the librettos for a dramatic song cycle, Legendary Deaths, and a one-act opera, Oscar / Sarah / Salome, as well as a music theater work titled Georgette’s Last Rehearsal, for which he is writing the playscript, lyrics and score.
THE MARK OF CAIN
Voice and Role Descriptions of the Characters
CAIN (Leader of Enoch, long-ago slayer of his brother Abel)
Importance: Leading Male Role
Voice Type: Baritone: Dramatic.
Range: Low A to High F# The part sits high in the range. Many top notes.
Description of the Character: He's brusque, anguished and conflicted. As the leader of the world's first city, he's seemingly all-powerful but has feet of clay, and his secret vulnerabilities ultimately undo him. High-handed in public, world-weary in private, he shifts effortlessly between supplication, flattery and defiance.