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Opera creators Morrison, Jacobs announce five-year partnership

Opera producer Beth Morrison.Michal Fattal

Expanding a collaboration already set to produce one of Boston’s largest operatic undertakings in decades, Beth Morrison Projects has announced an extension of its alliance with Friends of Madame White Snake, a not-for-profit cultural organization headed by Boston-based librettist and producer Cerise Lim Jacobs. The partnership currently is preparing “Ouroboros Trilogy,” a cycle of operas conceived by Jacobs with music by Scott Wheeler, Zhou Long, and Paola Prestini, for a September 2016 premiere at the Cutler Majestic Theatre. (One part of the trilogy, Zhou’s “Madame White Snake,” was mounted by Opera Boston in 2010, and won a Pulitzer Prize in 2011.)

Producer Cerise Lim Jacobs.Jill Steinberg

Now, Morrison and Jacobs have announced four additional productions, projected out to the end of the decade. “REV.23,” with music by former Bostonian Julian Wachner, is based on an imagined 23d chapter of Revelation (September 2017). “PermaDeath” is an interactive video game opera, with music by Dan Visconti and a libretto co-credited to Jacobs and game designer Pirate Epstein (March 2018).


Composers remain to be named for two more operas: “Monkey,” a “kung fu puppet parable,” with human performers interspersed among a puppet cast (September 2019), and “Cosmic Cowboy,” based on the landing of space probe Philae on a comet, and featuring robotic technology developed by New York’s 3LD Art & Technology Center (September 2020).

For all four operas, Morrison will serve as creative producer and Cori Ellison as dramaturge. Mark Streshinsky will direct “REV.23,” and Michael Counts, who is directing “Ouroboros Trilogy,” will return for “PermaDeath.”

BMP’s first local production, Sarah Kirkland Snider’s song cycle “Penelope,” will open at the Gardner Museum on Dec. 3.

David Weininger can be reached at globeclassicalnotes@gmail.com. Follow him on Twitter @davidgweininger.