Key to preferred voice types: C: coloratura or high soprano; S: soprano; M: mezzo-soprano; A: alto; Ct: countertenor; T: tenor; b: baritone; Bb: bass-baritone;
B: bass. Fachs and genders may be switched as desired.
Book I: Full Length Operas
with Medium Sized Orchestra: (listed alphabetically):
1. The Balcony: two hours and 13 minutes: 2 acts (66/67: 11 scenes); libretto by the composer after the play by Jean Genet (u.c.), as translated by Bernard Fretchman (u.c.); 4 to 12 singers: SMTB or 4S M 3T 4B, includes spoken dialogue and monologue, micro-tones, and sprechstimmer. The inclusion of more mimes greatly helps the production. At the center of a war between the royalists and the rebels is Madame Irma's "House of Illusion." This work is currently under revision.
21a. The Balcony: with orchestra: 2+/2+/2+/2+; 2/2/2/1; percussion, timpani, banjo, guitar, piano, celesta, harp and strings.
21b. The Balcony: with piano. The Bishop's fantasy (Act I, scene v: 19 minutes) was cablecast on BNN TV with Emma Rahn-Lopez, S, as Dove; Meg Raines, M, as Madame Irma; the composer, Bb, as The Bishop. The pianist was Shinobu Takagi. Directed by Richard Mott. Text permission granted by the publisher. The Bishop's opening monologue performed, several times in various venues, by the composer with Sam Walter, pianist. (The video will be available soon.)
2. Edward II: 2 hours & 22 minutes: Two Acts (72/72: 40 #s: 6 Tableaux). Libretto by the composer after the play by Christopher Marlowe. C T T b bB (B), narrator (B). A gay king and his lover are tormented by his ex-wife and her lover.
2a. Edward II: medium sized orchestra: 2+2+2+2+; 2/2/2/1; 2 perc., harp, piano & strings.
2b. Edward II: chamber ensemble. Thanks to a very generous grant from Daniel B. Kelly, this version was professionally recorded by The Acting Singers Project in 2010
at Futura Studios in Roslindale, MA: Mike Burke, chief recording engineer;
Carol Millard C: Queen Isabella; Michael Belle T: Gaveston; Christopher Aaron Smith T: Mortimer;
Brett Johnson b: Edward III; Thomas Dawkins Bb: The Executioner; Andrew Swan Bb: Lightborn; DEW Bb: Edward II; The instrumentalists were: Carol Millard: flute/piccolo; Thomas Dawkins: English horn/bassoon/ contrabassoon; Christian Contreras: clarinet/tenor saxophone; Russell Southcott: guitar (alternate version, with harp); Leah Kosch: piano; Christian Contreras: clarinet/tenor saxophone; Russell Southcott: guitar; Leah Kosch: piano; Priscilla Chew: ensemble 'cello & Sam Ou: solo 'cello. To hear "Edward II" please click on Christopher Marlowe to the right:
2c. Edward II: with piano. Selections preformed on January 27, 2012 with Boston Metro Opera with Carol Millard, C; Christopher Aaron Smith, T; David Edgar Walther, Bb; and pianist, Yelena Birayeva. Nine selections were recorded earlier by Olive Woodward S as Isabella; Andrew Cohen Ct as Edward III; David Swerdlove B as Lightborn; Ken Orton b as The Executioner and Bill Hays (T) and the composer (Bb) sang various roles. Bob Winkler was the pianist.
3. Hamlet: 2 and a half hours; 52 numbers in Three Acts (55/40/55); for 7-8 singers:
C S M (A) CT (or b) T b bB, 3 mimes and attendants; politically updated libretto by the composer based on the play by William Shakespeare.
3a. Hamlet: 2+/2+/2+/2+; 2/2/2/1; percussion, timpani, harp, piano, celesta and strings.
3b. Hamlet: Commissioned by Boston Metro Opera; with piano: "Laertes' Lament" (II/iv) was premiered by mezzo-soprano, Susan Craft Larson, with pianist, Yelena Birayeva at Boston Metro Opera on January 27, 2012. Act I, scene i was premiered, and "Laertes' Lament" (II/iv) was performed on May 12, 2012 by Boston Metro Opera with Carol Millard C as Gertrude, Susan Craft Larson M as Laertes, Christopher Aaron Smith T as Hamlet, and the composer Bb as Claudius, accompanied by pianist, Osnat Netzer. BMO also performed about a third of the work: I/i, I/v (partial); II/ii and II/iv with Carol Millard C (Gertrude); Sophie Michaux M (Leartes); Christopher Aaron Smith T (Hamlet); David Edgar Walther Bb (Claudius) and pianist, Artem Belogurov on December 15, 2012 with a lecture by Daniel John Carol.
4. King Lear: 90 minutes: Two Acts 5 Tableaux (13 scenes); performed with or without an intermission. Based on the play by William Shakespeare; 42 numbers for 5-7 singers: C S M A T b B and narrator. King Lear favors his two flattering daughters over his honest, faithful one. Gloucester, likewise favors her untrustworthy son over her devoted one. Genders and fachs may be changed. Cordelia and Edgar may be played by one singer (M, Ct or b), as may Lear and Gloucester (A or B). Faithful to original with massive cuts in cast and text. The narrator is the blind Gloucester (B or A) at an older age.
4a. King Lear: 2+/2+/2+/2+; 2/2/1/1; 3 percussion, timpani, harp, and strings.
4b. King Lear: with piano.
Book II: Opera Cycles: (various orchestrations):
1. When Animals Speak: 80 minutes and 45 seconds. Any of the six operas may be performed separately. An intermission follows Part I. The Swallow and The Prince. "Cat Duets" by Merton Brown and/or "For My Child" by Dr. Sam Walter (my father) may be included in Part II. After extensive, and unproductive search, the text to the first cat duet and "For My Child" may possibly still be under copyright.
Parrot I: The Swallow and The Prince: 45 minutes, 7 scenes; for 2-3 high and 2-3 low voices. A statue of a prince overlooks the city he once governed, and enlist s a swallow to enrich the poor with his gems. Libretto by the composer after the Oscar Wilde story: "The Happy Prince" with poems by the same author. For 4-6 singers: 2-3 each of high and low voices. This opera may be performed separately.
8a. The Swallow and The Prince: with orchestra: 2+/2+/2+/2+; 2/2/1/1 percussion, celesta, piano, harp and strings.
8b. The Swallow and The Prince: with flute, clarinet, violoncello, and piano.
8c. The Swallow and The Prince: with flute and piano: premiered by The Acting Singers Project with Carol Millard C, The Swallow; Sarah Griffiths S,The Caring Lover & The Dramatist; David Thorne Scott T, The Sick Lover & The Fisherman;
Premiered by The Acting Singers Project with Carol Millard, C, and flute, The Swallow; Sarah Griffiths S,The Caring Lover & The Dramatist; David Thorne Scott T, The Sick Lover & The Fisherman;the composer, Bb, The Prince; and Karla Kelley, pianist; with cinematography by Lewis Wheeler.
To watch the first production please click
on either of the lovers to the right:
on June 6, 2015 at The First Unitarian Universalist Church of Dedham, MA, USA: Carol Millard, C & flute, The Swallow; Adriana Repetto S, Patient & Fish Catcher; Susan Craft Larson M, Nurse & Dramatist; DEW Bb, The Prince; Leah Kosch, pianist; Dahne Naher, the narrator; recorded by Mike Burke. This performance was sponsored, in part, by a grant from the City of Dedham Arts Council all proceeds went to the Dedham Food Pantry.
8d. The Swallow and The Prince: with piano. Scene I was also performed with the sopranos: Linda Cecil (?), Mary Saunders, Shinobu Takagi, and Janet Wheeler, as The Swallow, and with baritones: Brett Johnson and Drew Poling as The Prince and with pianists: Merton Brown, Dr. Sam Walter, and Shu'ann Chai among others.
Parrot II: Aesop's Fables: SATB; 35 minute and 45 second cycle, with libretti by the composer based on the fables of Aesop.
1a. Aesop's Fables: 2/2+/2+/2+ 2/2/1/1 percussion, timpani, harp & strings; unperformed.
1. The Race of The Tortoise and The Hare: 4 minutes; STB; cellos & double basses.
2. The Ant and The Grasshopper: 9 and a half minutes; SATB, flute, bassoon, hard brass, gong and harp.
3. The Fox and The Raven: 4 and a half minutes. ST; violin or viola solo & 'cello solo.
4. The Lion and The Mouse: 13 minutes and 45 seconds. TB and medium orchestra.
5. The Re-match of The Tortoise and The Hare: 4 minutes; STB; celli & double basses.
1b Aesop's Fables: with piano as above:
1. The Re-match of The Tortoise and The Hare: Unperformed.
2. The Ant and The Grasshopper: Two sections premiered in 2010 by Boston Metro Opera by Roselin Osser, mezzo-soprano as The Woman; and David Edgar Walther, bass-baritone as The Man; with pianist, Aaron Likeness.
3. The Fox and The Raven: Premiered in 2010 by Boston Metro Opera by Christopher Aaron Smith, tenor, as The Fox; and Cecilia Allwein, soprano, as The Raven; with the pianist, Aaron Likeness.
4. The Lion and The Mouse: Premiered in 2010 by Boston Metro Opera by Christopher Aaron Smith, tenor, as The Mouse; and David Edgar Walther, bass-baritone, as The Lion; with the pianist, Aaron Likeness.
5. The Re-match of The Tortoise and The Hare: Unperformed.
2. Moratorium: Any of the three may be performed alone. The total is around 2 hours. An intermission follows Antigon.
1. Antigon: Libretto by the composer after Sophocles. One or Two Acts: One hour and 15 minutes. SATB with optional chorus. Antigon must chose between burying her brother as a martyr or following the king's command and not burying him as he is declared a traitor. Calls for a moratorium on capital punishment.
1a. Antigon: with chamber or medium sized orchestra: 2+/2+/2+2+ 2/2/1/1 percussion, timpani, piano, harp & strings
1b. Antigon for Brass Octet: 5 movements in 10 minutes. 2 French horns, 2 trumpets, 2 trombones, euphonium and tuba. Based on material from the opera: I/VII/1.
1c. Antigon: with piano. Selections performed
on January 27, 2012 with Boston Metro Opera
by Christopher Aaron Smith T; and pianist,
Yelena Birayeva. Winner of the Boston Metro
Opera Mainstage Award as part of their
International Composition Contest. Premiered
in November, 2010 with Sara Mayo, S; Angeliki Theoharis, M, Christopher Aaron Smith, T;
Jeremy Collier, Bb; and Stewart Kramer, piano.
To watch selections from "Antigon" please click on
The King below:
To see the orchestral score to "Antigon's Farewell" please use the PDF to the right; To hear Sara Mayo's performance of this selection, please click on her image below:
2. Daniel: 32 minutes: libretto by the composer after Sophocles. STB with chorus. Daniel foretells of the overthrow of the king by another army. Celebration of prophesy and calls for a moratorium on war. May be done as the third in the series, following the chamber version Persephone (see below). Best performed as a ballet (see IV/IV/3).
2a. Daniel: with chamber or medium sized orchestra: 2+/2+/2+2+ 2/2/1/1 percussion, timpani, piano, harp & strings.
2b. Daniel: with piano.
3. Jepthah's Daughter: 19 minutes; poem by Robert Hillyer (uc); S or M, optional B, and mixed chorus; Jepthah promises to sacrifice the first living being he meets if he wins the battle. He is met by his daughter. Calls for a moratorium on blood sacrifices. This work is best performed as a dance. See IV/IV/3.
3a. Jepthah's Daughter: medium orchestra (2/2+/2+/2+ 2/2/1/1 2/1 and strings). If this piece is done as the third in the series it will emphasize it's thematic similarities with Antigon.
3b. Jepthah's Daughter: 3a. piano vocal version.
3c. Jepthah's Daughter: with alto flute, percussion, violin, viola, 'cello and double bass (with low C extension) and a smaller chorus. May be done as the second in the series, to contrast its lighter orchestration and different genre (this being primarily intended as dance).
3d. Jepthah's Daughter: 3c. piano vocal version.
3. Oddities and Endings: The total is around one hour and 6 minutes long. An intermission may happen between #3. and #4. Any of the four may be performed alone. "Angst Wagon" by Rolv Yttrehus may be performed anywhere in the first half, except before Kali. It also does not fit very well in Part II.
Part I: Three Surrealist Operas:
1. Kali: 14 minutes: 2+/2+/2+/2+ 1/0/0/0 2 harp & violin solo: open strings. Begins before the birth of all things and ends after all things have been destroyed, in the middle sections inanimate objects: table, chair, sofa... interact and are led away by an actress playing open strings on a violin. Performed (audio only) by Carol Millard: C; Danute Mileika: MS and the composer: Bb with a taped simulation. Best performed as a ballet (see IV/IV/4).
2. Sineater: 19 minutes, for up to 6 voices and an actor; with viola, 'cello or piano. The Sineater, actress, Vanessa Shukis "eats" the most minor of "sins" imaginable: Carol Millard: C; Anita Costanzo, A; Drew Polling, b & Shu'Ann Chou, pianist. Performed by The Acting Singers Project: To watch the video
please click on The Sineater to the right:
3. Eye of Carrot: 12 minutes; A man (b or B) becomes pregnant and is blamed
3a. Eye of Carrot: with percussion, piano and string orchestra;
3b. Eye of Carrot: with string quartet and piano;
3c. Oczami Marchewki: in Polish; with vibraphone, timpani and string quintet.
3d. Eye of Carrot: with piano: English version,
Part II: 4. Birthday on The Moon: 21 minutes and 25 seconds. Finding the right birthday present is the problem for this couple living on the moon. Libretto and story
by the composer. A withheld chamber version was the second place winner in the
2011 Long Leaf Opera Comp t Tense: Kathy's gift to Bill: with problematic results, she uses the time machine to bring him Boris Godunov (because he liked the opera so much). Genders and fachs may be changed.
4a. Birthday on The Moon: S, A, T, B, 2/2/2/2 2/2/2/1 4 & timp. strings.
4b. Birthday on The Moon: S. A. T. B. and piano.
4. Two Myths: Both Myths require mixed chorus, soloists & a small chamber ensemble. The total time of is 67 minutes and 20 seconds. Either myth can be done separately; "Ritual" may be performed first and "The Other Wiseman" second.
1. The Other Wiseman: 45 minutes; libretto by the composer after the story by Henry van Dyke; a forth wise man is prevented from his pilgrimage by various acts of charity; SSAABB, flute, bassoon, harp, hand bells, chorus, actors and narrator; commissioned and performed by The Hancock Church, Lexington, MA, under Donald Maher. William Cavness, narrator. Performers included: Meg Weston S; Harriet Chamela, S; Marilyn Briggs, A; the composer Bb; and Isabel Plaster, bassoon. Cablecast in Lexington. (Selections will be available soon.) Also performed at The United Parish in Brookline, MA under Peter Kaisarsky. Meg Raines, M and the composer Bb, were among the performers. As always, genders and fachs may be changed: updated version: "The Other Wise Woman."
2. Ritual: 32 minutes and 20 seconds; libretto by Drew Hubbard; Hero (S) learns lessons, faces a demon (T) and receives many gifts (from MAB). SAATB with chorus and flute; French horn; and violoncello."Blessings on This House" won first place in the Boston Metro Opera International Composition Competition in the choral music category, and premiered, with two additional performances, by BOM. The rest is unperformed.
Book III: Cantata Ballets:
1. Covid-19: Recently completed: in April of 2020 during the covid-19 pandemic. The work has two versions; one is about an hour and a half the other is just under 2 hours.
I am actively looking for a choreographer and company with the resources to produce this work. The work uses about 50 of the 1890 poems of Emily Dickinson that are in the public domain. Set in 2020, "Covid-19" is the story of two lovers, who are referred to simply as A and B.
Part I: Love: The couple meets and they fall in love. A is extremely taken with B. However B is wildly flirtatious (with C and perhaps other dancers) and B acquires covid-19. How far this "flirtation" goes I leave to individual producers.
Part II: Nature: B is asymptomatic and transmits the virus to A.
Part III: Immortality: A eventually dies as a result, but returns as an Angel. Along the way, the couple deals with betrayal, redemption and resurrection.
The Singers and Dancers: B may be sung by a man or a woman; A, the poetry reader, may also be likewise be male or female. Both A and B co-respond to the two dancers that they represent; with C (who can be either gender) taking the other roles. The cast would benefit from the use of additional dancers. The timings and instrumental forces are listed below:
Covid-19a: 1 hour and 50 minutes for a poetry reader (the character called A) with chorus; vocal soloist (the character called B); small to medium sized orchestra:
2 2+ 2+ 2+ 1/1/1/1 percussion, timpani; harp; and strings,
Covid-19b: piano vocal version of 19a.
Covid-19c: 95 minutes (55 shorter movements); for vocal soloist (B) with vocal trio and or small chorus; English horn, clarinet doubling on bass clarinet, bassoon doubling on contrabassoon; D. B. string quartet and piano.
Covid-19d. piano vocal version of 19c; This is the original version.
2. The Journey: one hour; narrations by the composer with poems by James Joyce; 1-7 performers (1-5 singers; 1 or 2 narrators). A gay man goes to an alternate universe to destroy "The Beast" but, as a gay man, he would be killed immediately, so he goes as a woman; he finds the love of his life there, and the two women return to the original universe as gay men to continue their love. "The Journey" may also be performed as an oratorio, or as a staged opera (see VII/III/2; with more audio clips), but it is best as a ballet. See V/V/1b. "The Book of Runes" for more contemporary plain song to poems by James Joyce.
2a. The Journey: Mallets, percussion, piano, optional harp, and D.B. quartet or string orchestra;
2b. The Journey: piano, vocal.
2c. The Journey: with piano and synthesizer.
The overture was performed by The Kinetic
Dance Theater of Moscow. To hear the six
recorded numbers as recorded by DEW,
please click the red button below Drew's artwork: