Ardea Arts to Present Pop-Up Previews of BOUNCE THE BASKETBALL OPERA

Ardea Arts to Present Pop-Up Previews of BOUNCE THE BASKETBALL OPERA

Ardea Arts announces Pop-up Preview Performances of BOUNCE The Basketball Opera, their latest project in development. These will take place throughout New York City on Wednesdays at 5:30pm.

Wednesday, May 17, 2017 at 5:30pm - West 4th Street Cage

Wednesday, June 7, 2017 at 5:30pm - Grand Army Plaza Entrance, Brooklyn

Wednesday, June 14, 2017 at 5:30pm - Abraham Lincoln Playground, 134th Street, Harlem

Wednesday, June 21, 2017 at 5:30pm - Brooklyn - Surprise Location!

BOUNCE PopUps are free, non-ticketed events, of mini preview performances in public spaces, open to the public. For more information, visit They are conceived as little previews of the opera, slated for premiere November 17-19, 2017 in Lexington KY.

BOUNCE The Basketball Opera is grounded in pressing issues facing today's audiences. Based on the Greek myth The Flight of Icarus, BOUNCE tells the story of Ike "The Flight" Harris, a high school basketball star bound for stardom. Audiences will see if "Flight" can rebound from the emotional and physical pain of gun violence, as the story plays out on local basketball courts across the city and the country.

Pairing diverse casting with a fresh approach to arts engagement, local youth working alongside seasoned professionals are integrated into the production using the powerful medium of basketball. They become the basketball players, the cheerleaders and Flight's classmates and teammates. Local and national community leaders also play a number of the guest adult roles.

Basketball is a simple game - get the ball in the basket. But this 'simple' game becomes complex when outside forces like money and fame challenge team ethics. Isaac "Flight" Harris, a gifted and ambitious young player is on a fast track to stardom until his wings are clipped by the actions of a jealous teammate. We experience Flight's descent, then the powerful epiphany that changes his world forever. Synthesizing the grandeur of operatic singing with the grittiness of street rhythms, electronic dance music and urban hip-hop vocal stylings, BOUNCE asks: how does one rise up after being knocked down? The answer is in the game of basketball itself.

The creative team includes: Glen Roven (Lead Composer/Music Supervisor), Charles R. Smith, Jr. (Story and Libretto), Grethe Barrett Holby(Concept/Creative & Stage Director), with additional music by Tomás Doncker(Global Soul Composer) and Ansel Elgort aka Ansolo (EDM Producer). The Production staff includes Dr. Everett McCorvey (Conductor), Chidi Ozieh(Media & Sound).

The BOUNCE Pop Up casts feature Seth Ibarrondo aka Madison Priceas Poet, Phillip Gay as Flight, Charlotte Dos Santos as Sabrina, Ashley Jackson as Daphne, Troy Press as Announcer/MC, Patrice Turner as Mrs. Lucas, and Rod Raines aka Rodreezee with Basketball Percussion.

Ardea Arts has been developing BOUNCE in partnership with The University of Kentucky Opera Theatre. BOUNCE partners and advocates include prominent local council members, community leaders, and basketball industry advocates, many whom will participate in the production, including basketball legend and announcer Len Elmore. This project is made possible in part by the support of Art Works/The National Endowment for the Arts, The John and Jody Arnhold Foundation, UK Women and Philanthropy, The Laurie M. Tisch Illumination Fund, and many private individuals.


Grethe Barrett Holby (Concept & Direction) The Kennedy Center, Lincoln Center Festival, Houston Grand Opera, La Scala, LA Opera & companies across the US. Originating cast member Einstein on the Beach; collaborations with Leonard Bernstein (A Quiet Place), Lou Reed, Robert Wilson and Yusef Komunyakaa. Founding Artistic & Executive Director Ardea Arts, Family Opera Initiative, and American Opera Projects; Rockefeller Fellowship recipient, Holby holds B.S. and M.S. degrees from MIT. "One step beyond, busting the boundaries of...opera" (NY Times 4/23/17)

Glen Roven (Lead Composer/Music Supervisor) Composer, lyricist, conductor, pianist; Founder and Artistic Director for RovenRecords, distributed worldwide by Naxos; 12 -time nominee and 4-time Grammy winner; collaborated with Quincy Jones, Wynton Marsalis, Frank Sinatra, Julie Andrews, Aretha Franklin, Renee Fleming, Kathleen Battle and hundreds of other celebrities for film, television, Broadway, Carnegie Hall and many other international venues and orchestras.

Charles R. Smith, Jr. (Story and Libretto) Award-winning author, photographer and poet with over thirty books to his credit including a Coretta Scott King Award for Illustration (2010) for his photographs accompanying the Langston Hughes poem "My People" and a Coretta Scott King Honor Author Award (2008) for his biography on Muhammad Ali, "Twelve Rounds to Glory." Early books such as "Rimshots", "Hoop Kings" and "Hoop Queens" focus on his love of basketball.