Center for Contemporary Opera Presents "Jekyll and Hyde" by Barry O"Neal
The Center for Contemporary Opera (CCO), dedicated to the development and production of new opera and music-theater, presents an atelier production of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, Wednesday, February 11, 2009, 8:00pm with music by Barry ONeal and libretto by Robin Jones at The Cell 338 West 23 Street, New York.
A new twist on the famous novella by Scottish writer Robert Louis Stevenson that has inspired scores of major film and stage, this operatic version takes a different approach from the extreme polarity theme treating the material not as a horror story, but a romantic opera in one act.
SYNOPSIS Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde
Dr. Henry Jekyll awaits his fiance, Joanna Enfield to discuss their honeymoon plans. The arrival of Joannas brother and Jekylls best friend and solicitor, Richard Enfield with the evening paper discloses disparaging comments by the noted Sir Danvers Carew about Jekylls work analyzing human behavior. Jekyll is outraged at Carew and writes to him to come immediately and let Jekyll explain the purpose of his work.
Carew arrives dismissive of every argument Jekyll makes in favor of his attempt to isolate, and separate the good and evil in Man. Desperate, Jekyll puts his theory to the test and mixes a powerful potion, drinks it and becomes Edward Hyde, a frighteningly powerful and ugly monster of a man. He strangles the terrified Carew, an act witnessed by Joanna.
Revived but deeply shaken and confused, Joanna is gently questioned by Constable Feather and her brother. Her reasoning restored, she proclaims the monster she saw must be stopped. Hydes reign of terror in London is described by an offstage chorus and depicted by projections.
Back in Jekylls lab, he realizes he cannot control his transformations into Hyde and summons Joanna and Henry to explain what has happened. When they arrive he tries to explain his failure, but becomes Hyde and kills Enfield. As Joanna flees, a moment of clarity occurs for Jekyll but taking a vial of poison, he dies in her arms.
ABOUT Barry ONeal, composer
Barry ONeal was born in New York City on June 9, 1942. He is a graduate of Boston University, where he studied theory and musical composition with Gardner Read, Hugo Norden and Artin Arslanian. He is a published composer with a particular interest in opera, choral and vocal music, but he has also written several orchestral and chamber works as well.
He began his career in music publishing with Associated Music Publishers in 1964 as a rental librarian. After G. Schirmer acquired AMP, Barry served G. Schirmer as a sales representative, educational director and manager of the AMP division. In 1983 he became a vice president of G. Schirmer with responsibility for all contacts with the foreign catalogs represented by Schirmer/AMP and the American performing rights societies, ASCAP and BMI.
Barry joined Carl Fischer in 1985 as Director of Promotion and became Director of Concert Music in 2003, the position he occupies today.
338 West 23rd St
New York, NY 10011
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