George Abud-Directed RIDERS TO THE SEA: THE MUSICAL to be Presented At Brooklyn Art Haus

Off-Brand Opera's production of Riders to the Sea: The Musical asks a simple question: What is the difference between opera and musical theater?

By: Jun. 05, 2023
George Abud-Directed RIDERS TO THE SEA: THE MUSICAL to be Presented At Brooklyn Art Haus
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George Abud-Directed RIDERS TO THE SEA: THE MUSICAL to be Presented At Brooklyn Art Haus

Off-Brand Opera will return this June with Riders to the Sea: The Musical - an adaptation of the classic Vaughn Williams opera that furthers the Off-Brand Opera mission of blurring the lines between standard performance genres. The production will take place at the newly-opened Brooklyn Art Haus, an incubator, social environment, and performance space built for the longevity and success of artists and companies that maintain high standards and take risks with their projects.

Off-Brand Opera's production of Riders to the Sea: The Musical asks a simple question: What is the difference between opera and musical theater? This adaptation by Phoebe Corde and Jake Landau features for the first time a cast of musical theater performers, despite its performance history as an opera. Through reverent dramaturgical and musical transformation, Riders becomes a new musical with its most modern dramatic and musical moments newly illuminated in this profoundly experimental production.

Set in the Aran Islands off the coast of Ireland, a family of women wracked with grief from the deaths of all but one man in their family, must decide if they will come together and heal or whether they will let any bonds that were dissipate and die at the hands of the sea. Featuring the music and songs of Ralph Vaughan Williams, Riders to the Sea: The Musical asks the very fundamental question of what it means to be alive and how one can find hope even in the darkest of circumstances.

Riders to the Sea: The Musical is directed by George Abud, with Sadie Veach as the assistant director. Jake Landau is the musical director and pianist, performing alongside a chamber pit of viola, cello, and guitar. The evening also includes a performance of Serenade to Music from Clarum Sonum (Rider R. Foster, conductor).

The production features Cecília Carollo, Christine Duncan, Sam Hoffman, Sydney Kamel, Michelle Pauker, and Camille Umoff.

General admission tickets are $30, and can be found at

About Off-Brand Opera:

In a world where brand definition rules, three singers found themselves longing for a space to play around with something different-something off-brand. Tradition told them that's not how it's done. But what if it could be?

Off-Brand Opera strives to push and blur the boundaries of genre and performance practice, bringing musical communities together in the service of telling a story. We encourage cross-disciplinary collaboration in order to foster fresh, relatable, and relevant interpretations of beloved works.

Off-Brand Opera is committed to:

· Creating a safe space for artists to take risks when it comes to performance practice and genre.

· Performing in intimate, non-traditional venues to foster audience connection, communication, and immersion.

· Hiring musicians from a diverse set of musical backgrounds, including opera, musical theater, jazz, folk, hip-hop/R&B, and pop/rock.

· Welcoming project ideas from audience members, friends, and donors.


George Abud

(Director) is an Arab-American actor and director. Riders to the Sea marks his New York directorial debut. As an actor, he was nominated for the Drama Desk Award for Outstanding Featured Actor in a Musical for his role as Nerd Face in Emojiland at The Duke on 42nd Street. On Broadway, he has originated roles in The Band's Visit starring Katrina Lenk & Tony Shalhoub, for which he received a Daytime Emmy Award; as well as The Visit starring Chita Rivera & Roger Rees; featuring on both Original Broadway Cast Albums. Off-Broadway: The Beautiful Lady directed by Anne Bogart (La MaMa); Cornelia Street opposite Norbert Leo Butz, The Band's Visit directed by David Cromer (Atlantic Theater Company); The Resistible Rise of Arturo Ui opposite Raúl Esparza, Nathan The Wise opposite F. Murray Abraham, Ibsen's Peer Gynt, Rodgers & Hammerstein's Allegro (Classic Stage Company); Lolita, My Love (York Theatre Company). Regional: Lempickadirected by Rachel Chavkin (Craig Noel Award nom., La Jolla Playhouse), August Rush directed by John Doyle (Paramount Theatre); Annie Get Your Gun directed by Sarna Lapine (Bay Street Theater); and Puck in A Midsummer Night's Dream (Geva Theatre Center).

Phoebe Corde

(Adaptor & Dramaturg) [she/her] is a dramaturg, writer, and illustrator from Westport, Connecticut, specializing in stories of the strange, magical, and otherworldly. She is currently Resident Dramaturg at The Civilians, an investigative theater company based in Brooklyn, NY, where she is director of their artistic development group, the R&D Group. She was previously New Work Development Assistant at The Public Theater, where she provided dramaturgical notes and creative support to shows like Ain't No Mo', Wild Goose Dreams, and Disney's Hercules. She has a BFA in Creative Writing from Connecticut College, where she was awarded the Sally Abrahms Prize in Fiction.

Jake Landau

(Music Director & Adaptor) [he/him], b. 1995, is composer and music director based in New York City. His works have been performed by the New York Philharmonic, Houston Grand Opera, and headlining Broadway stars in venues as diverse as Carnegie Hall, Birdland Jazz Club, and the Royal Palace of Amsterdam. Select works of his have been published by G. Schirmer (Ayres, for SA and piano) and Edition Peters (Hardware Love, for orchestra). Landau is the youngest-ever winner of the Walter Hinrichsen Award from the American Academy of Arts and Letters; one of NYFOS'S (New York Festival of Song) "9 under 34" composers; a Clarendon Scholar of Oxford University; and an Extension-Division faculty member at Juilliard in New York, where he is based full-time. Landau is represented by UIA Talent Agency.

Performance Details: 

Off-Brand Opera presents



June 9-10 at 7:30pm

June 11 at 3pm

Brooklyn Art Haus (24 Marcy Ave)

Tickets: $30:

For more information and tickets visit


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