2022 | 2023 Season
Opera Parallèle presents
On top of the world, everything counts
Opera Parallèle is taking you to the top of the world! Immerse yourself in the awe-inspiring landscapes of Everest for a one-of-a-kind operatic adventure. Based on the true story of an ill-fated expedition in 1996, a group of mountaineers tap into the depths of their physical and emotional selves to realize their dreams of conquering Everest. Following the critical success of OP’s award-winning, genre-defying animated film Everest – A Graphic Novel Opera, the company now offers an entirely new way to experience opera, placing the audience directly in the action among the intricate imagery and soaring soundworld of this breathtaking story. This cutting-edge work fuses the vivid imagery of graphic novels with the visceral power of the operatic voice in a unique multi-sensory environment.
- February 3-12, 2023
Running Time: 68 mins with no intermission – performed in English with subtitles.
Renderings by Mark Simmons
From the moment you enter the venue, you will be transported into a stylized, animated mountainscape as imagined by Creative Director Brian Staufenbiel, illustrator Mark Simmons and Director of Photography David Murakami. Interactive lobby installations will guide you through a snowy tundra to your seat, where you’ll be invited to wear white to become part of the projected landscape and be fully immersed into the world of Everest. With a directional surround soundscape you will feel every crack of ice, the menacing storms and the powerful voices of our all-star cast.
Everest follows the true-life stories of three climbers, Rob Hall, Doug Hansen, and Beck Weathers as they attempt to summit Mount Everest in 1996. The crackling mountain, the prevailing wind, the power of nature abounds. Throughout the immersive experience we move between the climbers’ present realities on the mountain, that of their loved ones and their pasts as they slip in and out of consciousness. As the experience begins, we meet Rob, the expedition leader who has just reached the summit – 30 minutes past the safe turnaround time. His client Doug is 40 feet below him. In a separate timeline we meet Beck, semi-conscious on the South Col and hallucinating about his life back in Texas – in particular his daughter Meg who appears to him. Doug finally reaches the summit but is struggling to maintain consciousness – it will be up to Rob to get him safely back down the mountain. Meanwhile a large storm hits below the summit, making their descent even more treacherous. Through Rob’s memories and an extraordinary phone call, we also meet Rob’s pregnant wife Jan Arnold in New Zealand. As the climbers struggle to reach safety through the storm, we experience with them the brutal realities of Everest and the power of human conviction.
HEALTH & SAFETY PROTOCOLS
- OP works closely with our venue partners to maintain up to date Health & Safety policies. We regularly monitor local & state guidelines to ensure we are following the most current advice.
- For the most up to date information please visit Z Space’s Health & Safety page.
Creative & Production Teams
Click on an image below to learn more
Director & Creator
Projection Designer & Director of Photography
COMPOSER & LiBRETTIST
*Cast not appearing live
'Guy Cotter, Mike Groom & Vocal Quartet'
Support for this production has been provided by Bob Ellis, Stephen & Diane Heiman, and Marcia Barinaga & Corey Goodman.
Major production support has been provided by Gordon Getty, Paul L. King, Donna Dubinsky & Len Shustek, Scott R. Lord, and The Future Fund.
Major institutional and corporate support for Opera Parallèle has been provided by Adobe, The Lemala Fund, National Endowment for the Arts, City & County of San Francisco Grants for the Arts, and the Phyllis C. Wattis Foundation.
The Bullhorn programming is supported in part through a Civic Practice Grant from OPERA America’s Opera Fund and by The Henry W. and Nettie Robinson Foundation.