By Spencer Wilking
By Christina Black
By Calum Marsh
By J. Pablo
By Phillip Mlynar
By Jenna Sauers
By Brian McManus
By Elliott Sharp
Next December, Harbison's The Great Gatsbysprings up at the Met. In October, Bolcom returns to Lyric Opera of Chicago, scene of his McTeaguepremiere, with his new View From the Bridge, libretto by Arnold Weinstein and Arthur Miller. (The work will come to the Met a few years later.) And in September, Daniel Barenboim's Unter der Linden company in Berlin gives the world premiere of Elliott Carter's first opera, a one-act comedy called What Next?Barenboim will bring it to Chicago the following spring in a concert performance with his Chicago Symphony. Carter says his inspiration came from Jacques Tati's movie Traffic. With a libretto by Paul Griffiths, the piece involves six characters in search of what I presume to be normal life after a car crash. The search is hampered by non-communication, but enlivened if a recent look at some of the score is an indication by a superimposition of long-held vocal phrases that resemble skywriting.
The jury probably will be out forever on what the Great American Opera is, but Carter's new piece is surely part of what's next.
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