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Certitude and Joy
Bindlestiff Studio
San Francisco, CA
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Certitude and Joy
Erling Wold's Fabrications
and the Paul Dresher Ensemble

Certitude and Joy
a chamber opera by Erling Wold

22 March through 25 March 2012, 8 pm
29 March through 1 April 2012, 8 pm
Bindlestiff Studio, 185 6th Street, San Francisco

$35 general
$25 students / seniors / underemployed

direction: Jim Cave
musical direction: Bryan Nies
choreography: Kerry Mehling
set design: Mikiko Uesugi
lighting: Clyde Sheets
costumes: Laura Hazlett
management: Catherine Reser

Bob Ernst and Talya Patrick
Laura Bohn and Jo Vincent Parks
Kerry Mehling and Travis Rowland
and the ZOFO duet, Keisuke Nakagoshi and Eva-Maria Zimmermann

The mind is its own place, and the places inhabited by the insane and the exceptionally gifted are so different from the places where ordinary men and women live, that there is little or no common ground of memory to serve as a basis for understanding or fellow feeling. --Aldous Huxley, The Doors of Perception (1952)

Certitude & Joy was prompted by the true story of Lashaun Harris, who in 2005, claiming to have received direction from God, threw her three children to their death off of a fishing pier in San Francisco. Harris' religious belief, together with the evidence of her madness, captured Wold's imagination. Wold's libretto for Certitude & Joy is a semi-autobiographical work that mixes Harris' story with Wold's own early struggles to reconcile faith and rationality. How could she be so certain of God's voice in the face of such a terrible act? Wold grew up in a religious family and, in his youth, longed for the kind of religious experience that would give his the certainty of faith that held his parents. But he was also afraid of the consequences of religious certitude.

Over the last 15 years, Erling Wold's Fabrications has produced a half-dozen major works including Queer, a treatment of the William Burroughs novel of the same name; Blinde Liebe, about a murder by juveniles; A Little Girl Dreams of Taking the Veil, about a young woman on the eve of her entrance into a convent; Sub Pontio Pilato, an historical fantasy about Pontius Pilate; and Mordake, about a man with a second face on the back of his head.  Certitude & Joy continues Wold's artistic exploration of the topics of religion and madness.


Bindlestiff Studio (View)
185 Sixth Street
San Francisco, CA 94103
United States


Arts > Dance
Arts > Opera
Arts > Performance
Arts > Theatre
Music > Classical
Music > Experimental

Dog Friendly: No
Non-Smoking: Yes!
Wheelchair Accessible: Yes!


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