Tuesday, February 7, 2017

"As One" - Pennsylvania Premier Takes an Operatic Look at Transgender Experience

Brian Vu and Taylor Raven in "As One" Credit: David Bachman
"As One" tells the story of the transgender protagonist, Hannah, as she tries to reconcile the discord between herself and the outside world. With humor and empathy, As One traces Hannah’s experiences from her youth in a small town to her college years on the West Coast, and finally to Norway where she is surprised at what she learns about herself.

As One will star Pittsburgh Opera’s Resident Artists Brian Vu as ‘Hannah before’ and Taylor Raven as ‘Hannah after.’ It will be performed in the intimate environs of Pittsburgh Opera Headquarters.
Taylor raven in "As One" Credit: David bachman

On stage February 18, 21, 24 & 26, 2017, As One is described by the New York Classical Review as “everything that we hope for in contemporary opera: topical, poignant, daring, and beautifully written.” Most tickets are $40 and are available online. Phone 412-456-6666 or visit pittsburghopera.org.

Fascinating Facts about As One:
The vast majority of new operas are never performed again after their premiere. As One has already been performed by nine different opera companies throughout the United States and beyond since its 2014 premiere.
Brian Vu in "As One" Credit: David Bachman
As One is based very loosely on some of the experiences of Kimberly Reed. Kimberly produced and directed the film Prodigal Sons. The movie shows Kimberly returning home to a small town in Montana for her high school reunion, and her attempts at reconciliation with her long-estranged adopted brother, Marc. Kimberly discussed her experiences and the movie on Oprah in 2013.

Taylor Raven, the Pittsburgh Opera Resident Artist who is singing the role of Hannah after, sang the role with Seattle Opera in November.

As One Co-librettist Mark Campbell is involved with not one, but two of Pittsburgh Opera’s 2016-17 operas. He also contributed additional lyrics and dramaturgical advice to Pittsburgh Opera's world premiere of The Summer King – the Josh Gibson Story, which features music by Daniel Sonenberg.

For information about how to fairly and accurately report on transgender people and their stories, please reference this link, provided by GLAAD: http://www.glaad.org/reference /transgender

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