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LA Opera's Digital Short LET ME COME IN Premieres April 30

Featuring Soprano Angel Blue.

LA Opera's Digital Short LET ME COME IN Premieres April 30

LA Opera's latest Digital Short, "let me come in," will premiere online on April 30. Produced and directed by filmmaker Bill Morrison, "let me come in" features a new song by Pulitzer Prize-winning composer David Lang performed by soprano Angel Blue, one of opera's brightest stars. The short film incorporates rediscovered (and heavily damaged) footage from the lost 1928 silent film Pawns of Passion to astonishing effect.

David Lang wrote both the music and the lyrics for "let me come in." The text is assembled from multiple different translations of a single verse from the biblical Song of Songs. "I love the sense of waiting for something beautiful to happen, the anticipation of the moment, and also I love that the narrator hasn't moved to open the door yet," said Lang. "The sensuousness of the waiting is more powerful for her, and for us, than the actual physicality of meeting." The piece is scored for a small ensemble of performers: soprano Angel Blue, violist David Creswell, cellist Anja Wood and percussionist Miles Salerni, conducted by Bryan Wagorn.

Filmmaker Bill Morrison, director of the highly acclaimed films Decasia and Dawson City: Frozen Time, has long been fascinated with ancient, decayed nitrate film stock from long-forgotten films-what he describes as "goopy, sticky films deemed not worth saving." For "let me come in," he has resurrected footage from what may be the last surviving reels of the 1928 German silent romance Pawns of Passion, discovered in a Pennsylvania barn in 2012. After decades of expanding in hot summers and contracting in freezing winters, the deteriorated nitrate film stock now reveals, in Morrison's words, "imagery that seems to be pulled from a state of semi-consciousness, asleep but dreaming."

Morrison describes Lang's song as "a rumination on love and the borderline separating two souls, seemingly from the precipice of consciousness. When I heard Angel Blue's incredible interpretation, my mind immediately recalled the ambiguous tension in this scene from Pawns of Passion. Left to rot in a barn, and then scanned and archived again for another eight years on my own personal hard drive, it has found a new life through David's words and music, and Angel Blue's voice. It was very exciting to see how quickly it came together and how perfectly the image, words and sound meshed."

A few days after its LA Opera online premiere, "let me come in" will receive its broadcast premiere as part of the TCM Classic Film Festival, running virtually this year from May 6 to 9.

For viewing details and additional information, visit LAOpera.org/LetMeComeIn.


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