2007-02-22

The Fly: the opera

Charlotte Smith of Gramophone reports the scheduled premiere next year of a new opera: The Fly. The libretto, based on a 1957 short story by George Langelaan, tells the story of Seth Brundle, a scientist who accidentally fuses his body with that of a housefly. The opera's composer, Howard Shore, sees the character's noble ambition and tragic deterioration as the stuff of 'a classic opera story.'

The new opera already claims an auspicious pedigree. Shore is renowned for his film scores, including the 1986 film version of The Fly as well as Silence of the Lambs, Big, and The Lord of the Rings. The opera marks yet another collaboration between Shore and director David Cronenberg. Cronenberg directed the 1986 film and will direct the premiere production of the opera. Tony Award-winning playwright David Henry Hwang provides the libretto. Hwang understands well the conventions of opera, as his 1988 masterpiece M. Butterfly attests. Cronenberg directed the 1993 film version of M. Butterfly; the music was composed by Howard Shore.

The Fly will premiere in Paris on 2008 July 1 and then be performed by the Los Angeles Opera as part of the company's 2008-09 season.

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