TODAY IT RAINS WORKSHOP
Music by Laura Kaminsky
Libretto by Mark Campbell & Kimberly Reed
Film by Kimberly Reed
Original concept by Mark Campbell
Commissioned by Opera Parallèle and American Opera Projects
World Premiere – San Francisco 2019 produced by Opera Parallèle
Today It Rains is a new chamber opera inspired by a real event in the life of American artist Georgia O’Keeffe. On the rainy morning of April 29, 1929 O’Keeffe boarded a train in New York and three days later, arrived for the first time in Santa Fe, New Mexico, ready for new artistic experience, and transformed by the power of the area’s landscape.
The opera imagines O’Keeffe’s personal journey as the train rushes toward its destination and she reexamines her passionate but turbulent marriage with photographer Alfred Stieglitz, her artistic stasis, and her need for new inspiration to guide her work. Like any train journey that covers many miles, the past and the present are blurred, memory becomes reality, and the boundaries between sleeping and waking are erased. While taking its inspiration from this iconic artist’s journey, the story will resonate with anyone who seeks creative freedom and is inspired by the beauty of nature.
COMPOSER & LIBRETTISTS
Laura Kaminsky is a composer with “an ear for the new and interesting” (New York Times), whose music is “full of fire as well as ice, written in an idiom that contrasts dissonance and violence with tonal beauty and meditative reflection.” (American Record Guide) Recent/Upcoming Commissions: Some Light Emerges with the Houston Grand Opera; Piano Quintet for Ursula Oppens and the Cassatt Quartet, and a flute-piano duo for The University of Minnesota. The Crossroads Project, a multi-media collaboration on climate change recently featured on NPR, has been touring the US since 2012. Grants and awards: the NEA, Koussevitzky Music Foundation, Opera America, NYSCA, Aaron Copland Fund, Chamber Music America, American Music Center, USArtists International, CEC ArtsLink International Partnerships, Likhachev Foundation, Kenan Institute for the Arts, Artist Trust, Seattle Arts Commission, North Carolina Arts Council, others. She was awarded The Gold Cross of Merit by the President of Poland in 2016 for extraordinary humanitarian and cultural endeavor. She is Composer-in-Residence at American Opera Projects and professor in the Conservatory of Music at Purchase College/SUNY. laurakaminsky.com
Mark Campbell’s most known work is the libretto for Silent Night (2012 Pulitzer Prize; composer Kevin Puts). It premiered at Minnesota Opera, was broadcast on PBS’ Great Performances and is being produced by an unprecedented number of companies over the next two years. Mark’s other operas: The Manchurian Candidate, As One, The Other Room, Later the Same Evening, Volpone, Bastianello/Lucrezia, Rappahannock County and A Letter to East 11th Street. Awards include: Kleban Foundation Award for Lyricist, two Richard Rodgers Awards from the American Academy of Arts and Letters, NYFA Playwriting Fellowship, three Drama Desk Award nominations, Rockefeller Foundation Award, Domenic J. Pellicciotti Prize and Jonathan Larson Foundation Award. Upcoming premieres: The Wing Wherewith (Julian Grant, Music-Theatre Group), The Trial of Elizabeth Cree (Kevin Puts, Opera Philadelphia), Dinner at Eight (William Bolcom, Minnesota Opera). markcampbelllwords.com
Kimberly Reed, filmmaker and writer based in New York City/Newark, has been featured on the Oprah Winfrey Show, CNN, NPR, Details magazine, and The Moth Radio Hour. One of Filmmaker Magazine’s “25 New Faces of Independent Film,” and a New York Foundation for the Arts (NYFA) fellow, she has had fellowships at Yaddo and the Squaw Valley Community of Writers. Since As One, Reed has co-authored a new libretto with Mark Campbell, Some Light Emerges (for Houston Grand Opera) and a song cycle commissioned by OPERA America, Jeanette Rankin: Fierce Grace. Reed directed and produced Prodigal Sons, a “whiplash doc that heralds an exciting talent” (SF Weekly); premiering at Telluride Film Festival, it has been shown at 100+ film festivals and on television worldwide, landing on multiple Best-of-the-Year lists and garnering 14 Audience and Jury awards, including the International Film Critics’ FIPRESCI Prize. Reed was producer/editor/writer for Paul Goodman Changed My Life and is currently working on Dark Money, a documentary about Citizens United and campaign finance reform. kimberlyreed.com.
Conducted by Nicole Paiement
Directed by Brian Staufenbeil