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This June, SoBe Arts will present the world premiere of Intelligent Systems, an innovative 90-minute musical theater work about nothing less than the nature of the universe, conceived and presented in a thrilling multimedia style that will intrigue its audience and raise important questions about ideas that are - well, literally out of this world.

Through a wonderful integration of sonic and visual images, audience members will be taken through time and space on a quest to understand - and actually feel as though they are experiencing - creation, natural catastrophe, social evolution, and the modern threat of self-annihilation.

Composer Carson Kievman was originally inspired to begin work on this project more than 30 years ago when Stephen Hawking published his ground-breaking research on the Big Bang theory and the transformative nature of the universe. In 1980, Dr. Kievman received a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts and, in 1982, a commission from Germany's Donaueschingen Festival to begin developing the work. The musical score and storyboard/libretto were created periodically through the ensuing years and finally revised, updated and completed early this year.

Intelligent Systems maps out the history of a parallel universe and one of its planets as a series of natural catastrophes occurring over millions of years, leading to the development of civilization and ultimately a man-made catastrophe (including climate change and sea-level rise; raging viral pandemic; out-of-control digital miscommunications; and global nuclear fallout) followed by a post-apocalyptic speculation about what a future species might look and act like.

These are big ideas, and they translate well into a music-theater experience using animated projections, vocal, and instrumental ensembles. The evening is made more engaging through the use of unique costuming, and unusual stage and lighting effects. Intelligent Systems is a one-of-a-kind theatrical event that attempts to go beyond the normal opera/music-theater experience.

For this new production, SoBe Arts has engaged the production team from last season's triumph: Fairy Tales, Songs of the Dandelion Woman, a chamber opera by Carson Kievman that received rave reviews * and considerable local and national attention. It has been recommended for a Pulitzer Prize in music for 2015, and is under consideration for the opening season of San Francisco Opera's new Wilsey Opera Center. *"Kievman's FAIRY TALES makes a bold and powerful impact in world premiere... In a season that has seen more 20- and 21st-century opera in South Florida than in the last two decades combined, Kievman's opus is a stunner. "- South Florida Classical Review / Miami Herald.

"...written with such sharp intelligence, high technical skill and uncompromising integrity"- Palm Beach Arts Paper

With stage direction by Jeffrey Marc Buchman, music direction by Mary Adelyn Kaufman, projection design by Alain Lores, choreography by Rosa Mercedes, lighting design by Patrick Tennent, costume design by Camila Haith, properties design by Michael Miles and stage manager Jane Rosenbaum, Intelligent Systems will take place at 8 pm in the Little Stage Theater @ SoBe Arts on Thursday, June 4 (preview), and Friday, June 5 (premiere).

Friday and Saturday performances on June 6, 12 and 13 will be at 8 pm, and Sundays June 7 and 14 at 7:30 pm. General seating tickets are $25 and student/senior tickets are $15, in accord with SoBe Arts' mission to provide live theater at accessible prices. Parking is free. The Little Stage Theater @ SoBe Arts is an intimate black box-style space that for this production accommodates a very limited number of patrons. For more information or tickets, call 305-674-9220 or visit

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