CSO's Groundbreaking Pelléas Trilogy Continues with Part II: Water

The Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra (CSO) and Music Director Louis Langrée are pleased to announce details of the second installment of a three-year exploration of Maurice Maeterlinck's 1893 symbolist play, Pelléas et Mélisande, a collaboration with director, production designer and visual artist James Darrah, one of the edgiest names in music and opera today. This artistic undertaking utilizes groundbreaking visual elements, complementing orchestral works by Schoenberg, Fauré and Debussy, performed by the CSO.

The Trilogy began last year with Part I: Smoke and incorporated visual dance elements projected transparently above the orchestra's stage during a performance of Schoenberg's adaptation of the work. On Sept. 30-Oct. 1, 2016 (Friday and Saturday at 8 p.m.), the Trilogy continues with Part II: Water at the CSO's temporary home at the Taft Theatre in Downtown Cincinnati. The second installment explores Fauré's incidental music and will include spoken and sung theater with a new translation of Maeterlinck's rarely performed original source text by prominent operatic director Stephen Wadsworth.

Mr. Darrah and his collaborators have curated a team of versatile actors to explore the rich text (which draws many parallels with Shakespeare's Hamlet) and its symbolic themes of fate, love and longing. Celebrated actor Blake Berris, who has appeared in everything from Days of Our Lives to Breaking Bad, will perform the role of Pelléas, while mezzo-soprano Naomi O'Connell, known for her roles in musical theatre as well as opera, will perform the role of Mélisande. The production will also incorporate rich water imagery and other surreal, dreamlike theatrical elements. This is a program attracting national buzz to the Queen City, and demonstrates the CSO is a place of experimentation that puts Cincinnati on the map.

Tickets for these performances start at just $12 and are still available atcincinnatisymphony.org or by calling the CSO Box Office at 513.381.3300.

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