STAGE TUBE: Sneak Peek at Nico Muhly's TWO BOYS at the Met
Nico Muhly's opera Two Boys will have its North American premiere at the Met October 21, in a production conducted by David Robertson and directed by Bartlett Sher. The two-act opera, which features a libretto by award-winning playwright Craig Lucas, is loosely based on true events and follows a lonely detective whose investigation of a seemingly simple crime draws her into a complex web of online intrigue. Alice Coote sings the role of Detective Inspector Anne Strawson and Paul Appleby sings Brian, the 16-year-old boy at the center of her investigations. Sher's staging, a co-production with English National Opera, premiered in London in 2011. Check out a sneak peek below!
Two Boys, set in an English industrial city in 2001, combines two story elements rarely seen on the operatic stage: a police procedural, in which a detective follows clues to unravel the truth behind an act of senseless violence, and a dramatization of the mysterious and lonely lives of those who inhabit the dark corners of the Internet.
Vermont-born Muhly, 32, is the youngest composer ever commissioned by the Met, and Two Boys is his first large-scale opera. English critics praised Two Boys as an "auspicious operatic debut" (London Independent) featuring an "exciting new musical language" (Wall Street Journal), including six distinct choruses that evoke the world of the Internet.
Two Boys features the talents of scenic designer Michael Yeargan, costume designer Catherine Zuber, and lighting designer Donald Holder, all of whom are both veterans of previous Met productions and Tony Award winners for their work on Broadway. The 59 Productions team, well-known for projects ranging from the Met's The Enchanted Island and Satyagraha to the opening ceremonies of the 2012 London Olympics, will provide projections and animation designed to evoke the web of connections, missed and actual, that define our virtual lives. A new member of the creative team for Two Boys, added for the Met run, is the rising Israeli choreographer Hofesh Schechter in his company debut.
The cast of Two Boys also features Jennifer Zetlan as Rebecca, Caitlin Lynch as Cynthia, Sandra Piques Eddy as Fiona, Judith Forst as Anne's Mum, Christopher Bolduc in his Met debut as Jake, and Keith Miller as Peter. On November 14, English tenor Nicky Spence, who performed the role at ENO, will make his Met debut as Brian.