Lyric Opera of KC Edu. Dept to Present ONE FALSE MOVE, Addressing Teen Bullying

Lyric Opera of KC Edu. Dept to Present ONE FALSE MOVE, Addressing Teen Bullying

Female bullying, a silent threat that is often unaddressed by parents and teachers, will be the focus of a special opera produced by the Lyric Opera Education Department. One False Move will be performed January 18, 2013 at 7:00 p.m. at Pioneer Trail Middle School in Olathe, Kansas. The performance will feature area middle school and high school singers from the Lyric Opera vocal/drama training program, "Opera for Teens."

One False Move, by composer/librettist Susan Kander, was inspired by the New York Times best-selling book, Odd Girl Out, by Rachel Simmons. The opera will focus on the issue of female bullying - which Simmons's book describes as "the hidden culture of girls' aggression."

"When I read Odd Girl Out, I knew the topic would be perfect for our Opera Heroines program, which gives adolescent girls a chance to examine life choices through opera study," said Paula Winans, director of education for Lyric Opera of Kansas City. "I immediately contacted the author and not only was she excited about the idea, she agreed to come to Kansas City to facilitate a two-day workshop with the original cast of One False Move in 2002. Because of the response that the book, Odd Girl Out, has generated from readers across the nation, we are particularly enthusiastic about producing a public dialogue on this subject through such an exciting program."

The Company's national award-winning Opera Heroines program consists of educational workshops which provide a platform for discussing and musically acting out difficult situations. The program also covers production, costume design and makeup, and offers young teenage girls the opportunity to attend Lyric Opera rehearsals and performances.

Author Rachel Simmons is a Rhodes Scholar and a Vassar graduate. Her research on female bullying shed new light on what has been described as a socially taboo issue. "We used her information as a guide to create opera vignettes with our girls," said Winans. "Our girls did role playing and created dialogue and original scenes with Ms. Simmons. Then composer/librettist Susan Kander created the opera from the wealth of information the girls generated."

One False Move is an examination of the fictional lives of Amy and Bonnie, two girls who have been best friends since fourth grade and are now in high school. When a new girl, Joanne, moves into town she and Amy spread untrue, malicious gossip about Bonnie. Unlike most Lyric Opera family operas this one has a heartbreaking ending when Bonnie becomes the odd girl out.

The 7:00 p.m. performance will be held at Pioneer Trail Middle School in Olathe, Kansas. Tickets are $12 for adults and $10 for students and can be purchased at the door or by calling the Lyric Opera Ticket office at 816-471-7344. Seating is limited.

The Lyric Opera Education Department offers a variety of programs for elementary, middle and high school students to encourage opera knowledge and appreciation. For more information about the education programs or about the Lyric Opera of Kansas City, visit www.kcopera.org and click on "Education and Outreach."

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