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Thursday, December 16, 2010

Breaking News: Met Plans 'Space Opera' for 2014

Dr. Stephen Hawking
According to an article in today's Montréal Gazette, the Metropolitan Opera's projected new opera for the 2014 season is....

A Brief History of Time

There hasn't been an official announcement from the opera house, yet. The news broke on Radio France, in an interview with Canadian librettist Alberto Manguel. Mr. Manguel revealed that he will adapt Dr. Stephen Hawking's best-selling book, which deals with black holes, physics and the nature of the universe, for the stage.

According to the Gazette article, the new opera will be scored by Osvaldo Golijov, an Argentinean composer who is known for writing chamber works, film scores and large-scale concert works for chorus and orchestra.


A Brief History of Time (if that is indeed the title) will be directed by Robert LePage, who is currently directing the Met's new production of Wagner's Ring Cycle. Mr. LePage, who came to the Met following successful productions with Cirque de Soleil and the Royal Opera House of Covent Garden, is scheduled to unveil Die Walküre in April.

Published in 1988, A Brief History of Time is one of the most successful "popular science" books of the late 20th century. It deals with complex mathematics, deep-space phenomena, and approaches to the unified field theorem, a concept that eluded Albert Einstein. In 1991, Dr. Hawking's book served as the title of a documentary based on his life.

Dr. Hawking suffers from  Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (also known as Lou Gehrig's Disease) which confines him to a motorized wheelchair.  Despite his condition, Dr. Hawking taught at Cambridge for 30 years. In the last two decades, the professor has become a beloved multimedia figure and something of an international icon. His appearances have included The Simpsons, Star Trek: The Next Generation and on "Keep Talking", a song by progressive rock band Pink Floyd.
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Critical Thinking in the Cheap Seats

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Since 2007, Superconductor has grown from an occasional concert or CD review to a near-daily publication covering classical music, opera and the arts in and around NYC, with excursions to Boston, Philadelphia, and upstate NY. I am a freelance writer living and working in Brooklyn NY. And no, I'm not a conductor.