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The Lariat
The Thick House
San Francisco, CA
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The Lariat
Scolavox and Thick House Theater are proud to present the World Premiere of "The Lariat", a dark comic opera by composer Lisa Scola Prosek, based on the 1927 novella by the poet and anthropologist Jaime de Angulo.
Direction and Dramaturgy by Jayne Wenger
Bruce Olstad, Conducting

Winner of the NY Center for Contemporary Opera "Atelier" Award,  "The Lariat" tells the story of the colonial Spaniards' drive towards self-destruction, as they took the California Native American world down with them: a brilliantly prescient story of a culture clash where neither culture is a winner, when simple reason is abandoned for religious and social dogma.

Set in the 1790's, Father Luis (Philip Skinner) is a Franciscan friar obsessed with learning the Esselen language to better convert the Big Sur tribe to Christianity. His plan becomes more complicated when he falls in love with a young Esselen woman named Ishka (Crystal Philippi) who has abandoned her shaman husband and found refuge in the Carmel Mission. The brokenhearted shaman (Clifton Romig) puts a curse on any future suitors, tormenting them with dreams of wild animals and death. Human relationships become a metaphor for tensions in the interactions between the Spaniards and the Esselen. This eventually becomes personified as a love triangle between Father Luis, Ishka and Kinikilali (Mark Hernandez), a handsome vaquero that she falls in love with.

Made Possible by the Center for Cultural Innovation, The San Francisco Arts Commission, and Thick House Theater.


The Thick House (View)
1695 18th Street
San Francisco, CA 94017
United States


Arts > Opera

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


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