As our catalogue of opera adaptations grows, we’re thrilled to be able to begin offering licenses to perform them with other like-minded programs. As these are made available, they will appear on this page.
CURRENTLY AVAILABLE FOR LICENSE
Il sogno d’Arianna
An original full-length opera adapted from the works of Claudio Monteverdi
Music by Claudio Monteverdi, edited by James David Jacobs
English Libretto by Melinda Beasi & Sylvia Simmons
Original creative staff: Direction by Melinda Beasi; Musical Direction by Lemuel Gurtowsky; Choreography by Anna Plummer & Connie Flachs; Fight Choreography by Jeff Lord
Developed and workshopped under the guidance of James David Jacobs
Drawing on the framework of Monteverdi’s “Lamento d’Arianna,” the sole surviving fragment of his opera L’Arianna, Il sogno d’Arianna begins with the tale of Ariadne, princess of Crete, and her abandonment by Athenian hero Theseus on the island of Naxos. Joined by an assembly of women hailing from Monteverdi’s many sources, including Greek myth and Torquato Tasso’s epic 16th-century poem La Gerusalemme liberata (Jerusalem Delivered), Ariadne seeks comfort and meaning in their shared stories, told through both music dance.
In addition to L’Arianna, the piece includes excerpts from Monteverdi’s L’Orfeo, as well as pieces from his 8th book of madrigals and selected Scherzi Musicali (“Lamento della ninfa,” “Il combattimento di Tancredi e Clorinda,” “Zefiro torna e di soavi accenti,” “Chiome d’oro,” and many more). For this project, the Workshop created its own new editions of these works, including new English translations and new scores from original sources adapted for young singers.
Synopsis: After providing the crucial assistance needed for her love, Teseo (Theseus), to slay the Minotaur at the center of her father’s labrynth, securing his place as as Athenian hero, Arianna (Ariadne) has been abandoned in the night on the island of Naxos, alone and far from her home.
As she attempts to cope with her loss, Arianna is joined by three other women: Euridice (Eurydice), who, after dying by snakebite on her wedding day, is briefly offered (and ultimately denied) hope of renewed life by way of a deal between her husband, Orfeo (Orpheus) and the gods of the underworld; Erminia, whose unrequited love for the warrior Tancredi causes her unending pain; and Clorinda, the maiden-warrior whom Tancredi loves, but whose fate is doomed to tragedy by his hand.
Aided by these women and a group of storytellers, each with their own sadness to bear, Arianna finds comfort and seeks a way forward in her own circumstances.
|Cast: 11 singers and 2 dancers, alto, mezzo, and soprano voices
Instrumentation: Harpsichord, 2 violin, viola, cello
License includes: Vocal Score, libretto, individual orchestra parts in PDF or print; Arrangements may also be made for remote or in-person guidance from original creative staff, including seminars on historical performance practice & improvisation. Please contact Melinda Beasi at firstname.lastname@example.org for options & fees.
Note: Scoring can be adjusted upon request to include tenor and bass voices, with the understanding that all cast should be femme-identified/presenting, which can include trans women and non-binary femme-presenting singers.
Though this music dates back centuries, this new English libretto and its original narrative bring Monteverdi’s exquisite work to life for new audiences, and also contribute to what is now a very small number of full-length operatic works suitable for young singers.
Scenes from the original production:
Yes, you read that right, our adaptation of W.A. Mozart’s Cosi fan tutte is so drastic, we’ve had to change the title! Once a humorous treatise on the fickleness of women (the title can roughly be translated to “All women are like that”), our modern take seeks to explore just how screwed up we all are when it comes to love, and how our preconceived notions about relationships, gender roles, and the nature of devotion lead us to disastrous (and in this case, hilarious) consequences.
Music by W.A. Mozart, edited and adapted by James David Jacobs
Libretto by Lorenzo Da Ponte, adapted by James David Jacobs
Original creative staff: Directed by Melinda Beasi; Musical Direction by Lemuel Gurtowsky; Fight Choreography by Jeff Lord
Our extreme adaptation of Mozart’s popular opera features (among other things) time travel, gender-switching, fantasy tabletop role-playing, a Marriage of Figaro crossover, chocolate beverages, a twin-operated cafe, snorkeling gear, and some of the most beautiful music ever written. Run time is approximately 2.5 hours, including a fifteen-minute intermission.
Synopsis: Set in a local cafe, news arrives of a flotilla of ships containing soldiers from 18th-century Italy that has appeared in a nearby body of water. As strangers from those ships begin wandering into the cafe, its patrons are drawn into the drama unfolding between two young soldiers and their cynical friend who entices them to place a bet on their girlfriends’ fidelity.
|Cast: 4 soprano, 3 mezzo-soprano, 1 baritone; SATB chorus.
Instrumentation: Piano, 2 violin, viola, cello
License includes: Vocal Score, libretto, individual orchestra parts in PDF or print; Arrangements may also be made for remote or in-person guidance from original creative staff. Please contact Melinda Beasi at email@example.com for options & fees.
Note: In this adaptation, male characters Guglielmo and Ferrando are sung by women, reducing the need for male singers and also helping to deal with some of the original libretto’s sexist and racist overtones. Additional inserted material includes selections from Le nozze di Figaro and Il re pastore.
Scenes from the original production: