Fort Worth Opera to Perform Glass’ Hydrogen Jukebox
by Trevor Neal
The Fort Worth opera’s festival season this year sees literature from the standard repertoire but there is one odd ball in a season that maintains pretty “tonal” and “melodic” tendencies. Hydrogen Jukebox is an opera composed by Avant-garde composer Philip Glass and was first premiered in 1990 at the Spoleto Music Festival in Charleston, SC. The Spoleto production had six members in its cast, each one representing an American archetype. The purpose was to present a portrait of America from the composer and librettist point of view during the 1950s and 60s. The opera, based on poems by Allen Ginsberg, encompasses themes from these poems that can be described as “filthy”, “dirty”, and “obscene”. Now my intent is not just to inform you that this work is being performed but rather pose the question: Will this opera be welcomed with open arms? The time for minimalistic opera has come and gone in America, composer Jake Heggie obviously showed us this in his most triumphant opera which premiered at Dallas Opera in 2010. Sometimes there is a reason that operas have a premiere and are never done again. Nonetheless, I will continue to be the good opera patron that I am and attend the festival season to see this work and if you are in the area I suggest you do too.
MAY 24, 25, 26, 28M, 29 & JUNE 1, 2, 4M, 5, 2011
Contains adult subject matter; parental discretion advised.
A native of Dallas, Texas, baritone Trevor Neal is a favorite among audiences throughout the southwest United States. Mr. Neal has appeared in concert with the South Arkansas Symphony Orchestra, Phoenix Chamber Orchestra, San Antonio Symphony, and numerous community orchestras. Trevor is pursuing the Bachelor of Music degree in Voice performance at the University of North Texas where his opera credits include that of Colline in La Boheme, Dottore in La Traviata, and Figaro in Le Nozze di Figaro, a role which he reprised in his appearance with Spotlight on Opera Company of Austin, Texas. He has been under the baton of conductors such as Patrick Summers, David Itkin, Graeme Jenkins and coachings with acclaimed MET Tenor Richard Croft, Jake Heggie, and Stephen Dubberly. Trevor participated as a chorister in the World Premire of Jake Heggie’s opera Moby-Dick and will be returning to the Dallas Opera this season to perform in the much anticipated Royal Opera House revival production of Boris Godunov.