Windy City Media Group Frontpage News
Celebrating 30 Years of Gay Lesbian Bisexual and Trans News
home search facebook twitter join
Gay News Sponsor Windy City Times 2019-06-26
DOWNLOAD ISSUE
About WCMG Publications News Index  Entertainment Features Bars & Clubs Calendar Videos Advertisers OUT! Guide    Marriage

Sponsor
Sponsor
Sponsor

  WINDY CITY TIMES

SCOTTISH PLAY SCOTT A trans opera journey 'As One'
by Scott C. Morgan, Windy City Times
2017-11-15

facebook twitter pin it google +1 reddit email


As One is a 2014 chamber opera exploring a transgender woman's journey of self-realization and acceptance. Commissioned by American Opera Projects, As One initially escaped the notice of classical conductor Alexandra Enyart.

Yet now Enyart is proud to be tied to the growing reputation of As One—she's guest conducting Chicago Fringe Opera's Windy City debut of the work at the Center on Halsted. It's just one of 11 separate As One productions appearing during the 2017-18 season, and follows on the heels of San Diego Opera's staging earlier this month.

"Being transgender, I definitely connect with this," said Enyart, who recently relocated to Chicago from Louisville, Kentucky, to be music director of Thompson Street Opera Company. "Just knowing As One exists made me very happy."

As One was conceived by lesbian composer Laura Kaminsky, the head of composition at Purchase College Conservatory of Music/SUNY and the former artistic director of Symphony Space in New York. As One features a collaborative libretto by gay lyricist/librettist Mark Campbell ( the Pulitzer Prize-winning opera Silent Night and Chicago Opera Theater's forthcoming Elizabeth Cree ) and trans filmmaker/journalist Kimberly Reed ( the 2008 documentary Prodigal Sons ).

"It's so important to have someone who has gone through the same experience, or a very similar experience, to be working on this project," said Enyart about Reed, whose film work is also incorporated into Chicago Fringe Opera's staging of As One.

"It rings with an incredible truth to it and it is incredible how Kaminsky and Campbell, who are cisgender, have managed to learn so much about the transgender community," Enyart said. "And represent it so strongly and positively."

As One is scored for a string quartet, and distinctively features two performers playing one character simultaneously. "Hannah Before" is sung by a baritone, while a mezzo-soprano is "Hannah After."

Enyart conducts members of the new music ensemble Zafa Collective for Chicago Fringe Opera's production. She is also welcome resource to As One director Amy Hutchison and singers Jonathan Wilson and Samantha Attaguile in their portrayal of Hannah.

"I've not had the opportunity really before now to meet and speak with trans folks who were out to me or that I was aware of," Attaguile said. "It's been a really special experience."

"Alexandra has been very good at putting a very personal expression to what we've been working on and making it personal for each of us," Wilson said. "And approach this with as much context and understanding of the reality of experience as we could."

Enyart said she was careful not to just offer up "pamphlet version" advice that would be handed out to parents and families. Instead, Enyart wanted Attaguile and Wilson to personalize their own Google searches as if they were facing Hannah's internal struggle. They needed to be exposed to the variety of confusing or poorly written online advice that might influence vulnerable trans youth.

"Just having a transgender voice in the room who has these experiences really helps bring some of these moments into more clarity," Enyart said. She was also grateful to About Face Theatre, which presented a talk about gender and sexuality to the company.

In a perfect world, Attaguile said trans singers would be cast in future productions of the opera. But in the meantime, Attaguile is grateful that she gets the opportunity to be part of the growing visibility of trans people and issues by performing in As One.

"It's a happy story, but also full of conflict in trying to figure yourself out," Attaguile said. "Audiences should be able to identify with it because everyone has gone through that in some way—asking 'Who am I?' and 'Where do I really belong?'"

"[As One] can be so relatable, while still giving this underrepresented voice a moment to be front and center," Wilson said. "It's easy to grasp onto and feel a part of."

Enyart is pleased that opera companies are taking notice of As One. She feels so many productions have proliferated thanks to the opera's intimate scale and accessible score. Yet Enyart doesn't want As One to be the only opera out there telling a trans story.

"I hope that in the future we can see more works focused on female to male, as well as non-binary, as well as really emphasizing transgender people of color," Enyart said. "[As One] is a great step to inclusivity, but I hope more of these works come around and I can't wait to see them when they do."

Chicago Fringe Opera's local premiere of As One plays 7 p.m. Thursday through Sunday, Nov. 16-19, in the Hoover-Leppen Theatre at Center on Halsted, 3656 N. Halsted St. As One is sung in English with projected English surtitles. Tickets are $40 and $20 for students. Call 773-472-6469 or visit ChicagoFringeOpera.com for more information .


facebook twitter pin it google +1 reddit email





Windy City Media Group does not approve or necessarily agree with the views posted below.
Please do not post letters to the editor here. Please also be civil in your dialogue.
If you need to be mean, just know that the longer you stay on this page, the more you help us.


  ARTICLES YOU MIGHT LIKE

Gay News

THEATER REVIEW Ada and the Engine 2019-06-26 - Playwright: Lauren Gunderson At: The Artistic Home, 1376 W. Grand Ave. Tickets: TheArtisticHome.org 866-811-4111; $34. Runs through: Aug. 4 "If we ...


Gay News

THEATER REVIEW Something Clean 2019-06-26 - Playwright: Selina Fillinger At: Sideshow Theatre and Rivendell Ensemble at Victory Gardens Biograph, 2433 N. Lincoln Ave. Tickets: 773-871-3000; VictoryGardens.org; $20-$30. Runs through: ...


Gay News

THEATER REVIEW The River 2019-06-26 - Playwright: Jez Butterworth At: Greenhouse Theater Center, 2257 N. Lincoln Ave. Tickets: Bohotheatre.org Runs through: July 28 It's both simple and impossible ...


Gay News

Critics' Picks 2019-06-26 - La Havana Madrid, Teatro Vista @ The Den, extended through 30 June—Last two weeks to see this thrice-remounted musical about Chicago's Latinx history, ...


Gay News

WHAT TO DO FOR PRIDE 2019-06-26 - In addition to the parade, check out these big pride events from all over the Chicago area and http://www.windycitymediagroup.com/gay/chicago/events/upcoming.php . Pride in ...


Gay News

MUSIC Lizzo, Kim Petras help celebrate Pride in Chicago 2019-06-26 - June 20 proved to be a jam-packed night for the LGBT community with events all over the city to celebrate Pride month. The ...


Gay News

MUSIC Out country singer Ty Herndon discusses what matters most 2019-06-26 - Ty Herndon may have been in the music business for more than a couple decades now—but he's not slowing down at all. For ...


Gay News

SHOWBIZ Ryan Murphy, Billy Porter, Boy George, 'Queer Eye' 2019-06-25 - Ryan Murphy will direct and produce the feature adaptation of the Tony-nominated stage musical The Prom and has secured a cast that puts ...


Gay News

The Second City salutes Pride 2019-06-22 - The Second City's Salute to Pride is waving a welcoming flag this June with an all LGBTQ identifying cast. Head upstairs to UP ...


Gay News

Steppenwolf Theatre Company Extends Ms. Blakk for President 2019-06-21 - CHICAGO ( June 21, 2019 ) — Due to popular demand, Steppenwolf Theatre Company has added seven more performances to the run of ...


 



Copyright © 2019 Windy City Media Group. All rights reserved.
Reprint by permission only. PDFs for back issues are downloadable from
our online archives. Single copies of back issues in print form are
available for $4 per issue, older than one month for $6 if available,
by check to the mailing address listed below.

Return postage must accompany all manuscripts, drawings, and
photographs submitted if they are to be returned, and no
responsibility may be assumed for unsolicited materials.
All rights to letters, art and photos sent to Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago
Gay and Lesbian News and Feature Publication) will be treated
as unconditionally assigned for publication purposes and as such,
subject to editing and comment. The opinions expressed by the
columnists, cartoonists, letter writers, and commentators are
their own and do not necessarily reflect the position of Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay,
Lesbian, Bisexual and Transegender News and Feature Publication).

The appearance of a name, image or photo of a person or group in
Nightspots (Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times
(a Chicago Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender News and Feature
Publication) does not indicate the sexual orientation of such
individuals or groups. While we encourage readers to support the
advertisers who make this newspaper possible, Nightspots (Chicago
GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay, Lesbian
News and Feature Publication) cannot accept responsibility for
any advertising claims or promotions.

 

 

 

TRENDINGBREAKINGPHOTOS

Sponsor
Sponsor
Sponsor
Sponsor
Sponsor


 



About WCMG Publications News Index  Entertainment Features Bars & Clubs Calendar Videos Advertisers OUT! Guide    Marriage


About WCMG      Contact Us      Online Front  Page      Windy City  Times      Nightspots      OUT! Guide     
Identity      BLACKlines      En La Vida      Archives      Subscriptions      Distribution      Windy City Queercast     
Queercast Archives      Advertising  Rates      Deadlines      Advanced Search     
Press  Releases      Event Photos      Join WCMG  Email List      Email Blast     
Upcoming Events      Todays Events      Ongoing Events      Post an Event      Bar Guide      Community Groups      In Memoriam      Outguide Categories      Outguide Advertisers      Search Outguide      Travel      Dining Out      Blogs      Spotlight  Video     
Classifieds      Real Estate      Place a  Classified     

Windy City Media Group publishes Windy City Times,
The Bi-Weekly Voice of the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Trans Community.
5315 N. Clark St. #192, Chicago, IL 60640-2113 • PH (773) 871-7610 • FAX (773) 871-7609.