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Miller Theatre Opens its Season With the NY Premiere Of PROVING UP

Miller Theatre at Columbia University School of the Arts opens its 30th Anniversary 2018-19 Season and launches its new Chamber Opera Commissioning Initiative with the New York Premiere of PROVING UP, adapted from the short story "Proving Up" by Karen Russell.

After triumphing in Washington D.C. and Omaha, composer Missy Mazzoli and librettist Royce Vavrek's newest opera comes to NYC. This haunting tale of a family's pursuit of the American Dream will transform the Miller stage into post-Civil War Nebraska.

Composer Missy Mazzoli and librettist Royce Vavrek thrilled audiences and critics alike in 2016 with the premiere of their opera Breaking the Waves. This dynamic creative duo reunites for Proving Up, a harrowing tale of a family's pursuit of the American Dream set in post-Civil War Nebraska. Miller's 30th Anniversary Season opens with the New York premiere of this chamber opera that is by turns optimistic, exultant, and menacing.

After its premiere at Opera Omaha this past April, Musical America described Proving Up as "completely riveting from the beginning to its devastating conclusion" and "a suspenseful, gripping, and unsettling work of music theater."

Proving Up premiered in January 2018 at Washington D.C.'s Kennedy Center, then the new production premiered in April 2018 at Opera Omaha as part of their newly launched ONE Festival.

Missy Mazzoli, composer
Royce Vavrek, librettist
Christopher Rountree, conductor
James Darrah, production
Nathan Troup, director
Adam Rigg, scenic designer
Chrisi Karvonides-Dushenko, costume designer
Pablo Santiago, lighting designer
Ronell Oliveri, wig & makeup designer

Michael Slattery, Miles Zegner
John Moore, Mr. Johannes "Pa" Zegner
Talise Trevigne, Mrs. Johannes "Ma" Zegner
Cree Carrico, Zegner Daughter, Littler
Abigail Nims, Zegner Daughter, Taller
Andrew Harris, The Sodbuster
Sam Shapiro, Peter Zegner

Wednesday, September 26, 2018, 8:00 p.m.
Friday, September 28, 2018, 8:00 p.m.
Miller Theatre (2960 Broadway at 116th Street, New York, NY)

Tickets: $40-$75; Students with valid ID: $7-$39

Proving Up launches Miller Theatre's new Chamber Opera Commissioning Initiative, which will contribute meaningfully to the American opera landscape, provide composers with an opportunity to create significant new work, and increase audience engagement with contemporary opera. This initiative builds upon the success of Miller Theatre's past acclaimed productions, including the New York stage premiere of Elliott Carter's What Next? and the U.S. premieres of Olga Neuwirth's Lost Highway and Iannis Xenakis's Oresteia. As part of its famed Opera Workshop in the 1940s, Columbia presented many important new opera works and rediscoveries, most notably the world premieres of Benjamin Britten and W.H. Auden's Paul Bunyan, and Virgil Thomson and Gertrude Stein's The Mother of Us All. Miller Theatre is proud to celebrate its rededication to this pioneering legacy.

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