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Hybrid Hybrid Event
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(Hybrid) Behind the Scenes of the Opéra Comique

Tue 9 May 2023 @ 19 h 30 - 20 h 30

Hybrid Hybrid Event

A special discussion, preview, and performance of the Opéra Comique's Breaking the Waves, joined by the composer, librettist, and star performer of the show.

We are delighted to welcome Missy Mazzoli, composer, and Royce Vavrek, librettist, alongside performer Sydney Mancasola, to discuss their highly-anticipated staging of Breaking the Waves at the Opéra Comique. Based on Lars Von Trier’s award-winning 1996 film, Mazzoli and Vavrek’s fresh take on the trials of a devout young woman from a strict Calvinist enclave in Northern Scotland was awarded the International Opera Award for Best World Premiere in 2017. Join them at the Library as they discuss the immense task of adapting age-old problems, from faith and morality to love and community, to the contemporary operatic stage.

The Opéra Comique is offering the Library community a generous 40% discount for tickets to Breaking the Waves.
To purchase your discounted tickets, click here

About the speakers:

Missy Mazzoli’s music has been performed by the New York Philharmonic, Atlanta Symphony, the Philadelphia Orchestra, the BBC Symphony, the Cincinnati Orchestra, the National Symphony, LA Opera, Scottish Opera, eighth blackbird, Kronos Quartet and many others. She is one of the first two women to receive a main stage commission from the Metropolitan Opera, and was nominated for a Grammy award for Best Classical Composition. From 2018-2021 she was Composer-in-Residence at the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, and from 2012-2015 was Composer-in-Residence with Opera Philadelphia.

Royce Vavrek is a Canada-born, Brooklyn-based librettist and lyricist who has been called “the indie Hofmannsthal” (The New Yorker) a “Metastasio of the downtown opera scene” (The Washington Post), “an exemplary creator of operatic prose” (The New York Times), and “one of the most celebrated and sought after librettists in the world” (CBC Radio). His opera “Angel’s Bone” with composer Du Yun was awarded the 2017 Pulitzer Prize for Music.

Sydney Mancasola studied voice at the Oberlin Conservatory of Music, and later went on join Oper Frankfurt as a member of the ensemble. Sydney’s notable debuts have included her house debut at the Metropolitan Opera as Pamina in the Julie Taymor production of The Magic Flute, her company and role debut as Adina L’elisir d’amore at the Opéra de Paris, and Melisande Pelléas et Mélisande with LA Opera, and her debut as Bess in a new production of Breaking the Waves at the Adelaide Festival Centre in Australia and Edinburgh International Festival, where she was awarded a Herald Angel for her performance.

Nicolas Chesneau is a French pianist, vocal coach and conductor. He studied in Paris with Anne le Bozec. He worked in many opera houses in France (Bastille, Lille, Dijon, Strasbourg, Marseille) and as assistant in international festivals (Aix-en-Provence, Ruthrtriennale, Wienerfestwochen).

Important information: The discussion will be available both online and in person. While the conversation will happen in person (Mazzoli, Vavrek, Mancasola, and Chesneau will appear in the Reading Room), the Library will stream the conversation on Zoom for a live viewing experience. Both in-person and online attendees will be able to pose questions.

This event is presented in partnership with the Opéra Comique, with the support of The Florence Gould Foundation and the American Center for Art and Culture. 

This event requires advance registration.

Attendance at this event constitutes permission for your photograph or video to be taken at the event and used by the American Library in Paris for marketing, promotional, pedagogical, or other purposes.

Evenings with an Author are free and open to the public (with a 10€ suggested donation)
thanks to the generous support of Gregory Annenberg Weingarten of GRoW @ Annenberg.


Tue 9 May 2023
19 h 30 min - 20 h 30 min
Event Categories:
(Hybrid) Behind the Scenes of the Opéra Comique
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