137 episodes

Opera does not just happen with the big guys, the future of opera is happening now in small opera companies with independent producers. Named one of the “The Must-Listen Podcasts for Opera and Classical Music Fans” by Playbill, one of Opera Wire’s “5 Opera Podcasts You Should Be Listening To”, one of the top classical music podcasts by ARTaxMusic.com, and brianwise.com, the Indie Opera Podcast is the place to go to for news about where opera is headed. We focus on companies that are creating new operas and who are presenting the classics in new ways for wider audiences, no matter how big or small.

The Indie Opera Podcast Peter Szep, Brooke Larimer, Ashley Renee Watkins, Chuck Sachs and Walker Lewis

    • Arts
    • 4.7 • 22 Ratings

Opera does not just happen with the big guys, the future of opera is happening now in small opera companies with independent producers. Named one of the “The Must-Listen Podcasts for Opera and Classical Music Fans” by Playbill, one of Opera Wire’s “5 Opera Podcasts You Should Be Listening To”, one of the top classical music podcasts by ARTaxMusic.com, and brianwise.com, the Indie Opera Podcast is the place to go to for news about where opera is headed. We focus on companies that are creating new operas and who are presenting the classics in new ways for wider audiences, no matter how big or small.

    Podcast 090: 2020 OPERA America Discovery Grants Part 2

    Podcast 090: 2020 OPERA America Discovery Grants Part 2

    The show features all the composer/librettist teams to receive the 2020 OPERA America Discovery Grants which support composers who identify as women in the development of new operatic works and the advancement of their careers in the opera industry.

    Justine Chen, composer, and Stephanie Fleischman, librettist, talk about delving into Justine’s multifaceted Taiwanese family history for Seven Sisters, which follows the form of a formal Taiwanese funeral. Melissa Dunphy and Jacqueline Goldfinger, composer and librettist, share the macabre origin of Alice Tierney: an unsolved 1880 murder in Philadelphia on Melissa’s property, and discuss the novel way they are choosing to tell the story. Kirsten Volness, Susan Werbe, and Kate Holland, composer and librettists of Letters That You Will Not Get: Women’s Voices from the Great War, discuss the work’s fascinating journey from song cycle to opera, and how they set to music the real-life accounts of multiple women on all sides of the conflict who lived through World War I.

    • 1 hr 28 min
    Podcast 089: 2020 OPERA America Discovery Grants Part 1

    Podcast 089: 2020 OPERA America Discovery Grants Part 1

    The Indie Opera Podcast is releasing an episode which was recorded in the Spring of 2020 that got derailed during the start of the pandemic, and features all the composer/librettist teams to receive the 2020 OPERA America Discovery Grants which support composers who identify as women in the development of new operatic works and the advancement of their careers in the opera industry.

    We are joined by composers Lisa Bielawa, Mary D. Watkins, Milica Paranosic, Johanny Novarro; librettists Claire Solomon, Cheri Magid, and Jose Felix Gomez; and producer Martha Richards. There are lots of music and video highlights in this long-delayed episode, and we include updates on all the projects that they have been creating since the start of the pandemic.

    • 1 hr 18 min
    Podcast 088: Quamino's Map with Deborah Brevoort, Kimille Howard, Jeri Lynne Johnson and Cori Ellison

    Podcast 088: Quamino's Map with Deborah Brevoort, Kimille Howard, Jeri Lynne Johnson and Cori Ellison

    Joining us are Librettist and playwright Deborah Brevoort, conductor Jeri Lynne Johnson, dramaturg Cori Ellison, and director Kimille Howard discuss the origins and creative process of this unique production, which focuses on the Black Americans who fought for their liberty on the side of the British in the Revolutionary War and struggled to survive in London afterward.

    We also learn about the Black gentry in London at the time and how it may have intersected with the newly-arrived soldiers. Don’t miss this surprising look into the research, staging, and craft that went into bringing an important but little-known historical moment to light.

    • 1 hr 17 min
    Podcast 087: Carla Lucero and Dr. Rita E. Urquijo-Ruiz, The Three Women of Jerusalem

    Podcast 087: Carla Lucero and Dr. Rita E. Urquijo-Ruiz, The Three Women of Jerusalem

    Carla Lucero is the first Latinx and female composer to be commissioned by LA Opera. We discover how they translated the opera into Spanish while retaining the same poetic meter, as Lucero will produce the opera in English as well.

    We also discuss the significance of the Stations of the Cross, on which the opera is based, as well as why Lucero chose three anonymous women in the 8th station to be the heroines of the story. She also makes a fascinating choice on how to personify Jesus in the opera.

    The massive production will be at the Cathedral of Our Lady of the Angels and will feature 3 orchestras and 3 choirs. We can’t wait to see this love letter to LA, which fuses ideas from queer, Latinx, and borderlands cultures into an uplifting whole.

    • 1 hr 21 min
    Podcast 086: Paul Moravec and Mark Campbell

    Podcast 086: Paul Moravec and Mark Campbell

    Having both worked on Pulitzer Prize-winning projects, it was fascinating to hear how they view American opera and what types of stories attract them.

    We discussed the return of oratorios and “opera-torios,” and the first recipient of the Campbell Opera Librettist Prize. We also talked about Sondheim’s powerful influence on American opera and the creation of their stunning "Light Shall Lift Us" project in response to Covid-19. Don’t miss this conversation with two of our greatest writers, who are using their platform to send a hopeful and humanizing message to the world.

    • 1 hr 8 min
    Podcast 085: The Hang with Taylor Mac, Matt Ray, Chanon Judson, Machine Dazzle

    Podcast 085: The Hang with Taylor Mac, Matt Ray, Chanon Judson, Machine Dazzle

    Described as “a ritual celebration of queerness, questions, and the eternity of a moment,” the show is rooted in the jazz tradition and the operatic form, and imagines the final hours of Socrates. Prolific playwright and performer Taylor Mac joins us along with Machine Dazzle, costume and set designer; Chanon Judson, choreographer; and Matt Ray, composer.

    We discover the origin of Mac’s ideas about the piece and the many permutations it went through before it found its current form. We get a taste of what each collaborator brings to the show : how Dazzle challenges actors with costumes he calls ‘wearable stories,’ how Judson reflects performers’ movement ideas to create choreography for musicians as well as actors, and how Ray created his unique instrumentation for the work. It’s fascinating to hear how they worked on the piece during the pandemic and what it was like to come together in a rehearsal room after so much isolation.

    Don’t miss this opportunity to hear the backstory behind some of our most incisive and daring theatre creators making an exuberant foray into the operatic form.

    • 1 hr 6 min

Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5
22 Ratings

22 Ratings

blalocjo ,

Brilliant

I always look forward to each an every episode. They’re informative, entertaining and sincere. They talk about relevant trends in opera, and they always have interesting guests. BRAVI tutti! Keep up the excellent content!

Aaron Lipke ,

Re: accept offer to set review to counter tenor and small ensemble

I finished to The Indie Opera Party Episode 59 with Nico Mubly and accept his offer to a bad review set to counter tenor and small ensemble. I love your talking together mess and believe you to have auspicious futures. I enjoy and so should you, friends. Does your guest just announced that his dog farted but I don't believe him? I think he made up that part; the dog fart part. I have a question I pose in committee: Is Nico a liar or does his dog fart in life? He mentioned a cat. Will all the pets suffer him? He recounted a sex falconer. Will there always be animal intimacy? May your fortune be great and mercy on the rest of a farm you visit.

RLFAtlanta ,

Lots of info

I like all forms of music, but I came to this with zero knowledge of opera. This show is great because they cover (mostly) contemporary artists but also talk about classics, production, the art form as a whole, and everything from music and lyrics to how to pull together your own small production. The hosts are funny and knowledgeable. A great listen.

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