Hands off?

May 2nd 2010

Most of my operas lend themselves to the being handed off to a company to perform, i.e. the traditional model of opera production where the composer and librettist consult in the final stages but are rarely active producers or performers. However, one is not. This one falls into the "hands-off" category when it comes to opera companies. It is, at the moment, my most oft performed work and I have had a huge hand in every single one of those performances. My personal attachment to the work is like no other in my repertoire.

Why am I sharing this with you at this particular juncture? Well, it is in response to this article about Beth Morrison, producer at large and director of New York City Opera's VOX Contemporary Opera Lab.


Now, in terms of style, the operas that I'm willing to hand over to a company like City Opera (assuming they'll ever ask, that is) are decidedly not the operas that Ms. Morrison and VOX would seem to be interested in. Ironically, the one "hands-off" opera fits the bill perfectly and would have made a compelling addition to the VOX lineup this year (if you'll forgive me for being so bold).

VOX is a huge opportunity in terms of visibility and career growth. And the work most likely to be included should I submit it for consideration is the one I'm most reluctant to loosen my grip on. Such a quandary. What to do when artistic principles collide with potential career growth?

Perhaps I'm overly attached and would benefit from letting go a little as this guy reminds us.

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