Music by Jake Landau
Libretto by Emily Garber
Written in English.
Directed by Andrea DelGiudice as part of her evening-length concept Dido & Aeneas & Aeterna.
& AETERNA follows the story of Dido and Aeneas’s eponymous daughter. After her mother’s
death and father’s abandonment, Aeterna has been raised as Carthage’s new queen by the
city’s Goddess protector, Juno. When news comes of Aeneas founding Rome—the city that he chose over Dido—Aeterna sets out to avenge her mother and change the fate of her home. For if she kills Aeneas, then Rome will never rise to destroy Carthage. But Aeterna has spent a lifetime yearning to connect with the parents she has never known, and trying to understand how to find her own place among gods and destiny. As she nears Aeneas on her long, dangerous journey she must choose: either forgive her father or kill him.
Premiered onstage 2022 at The Narnia Festival in Narni, Italy, conducted by the composer from the keyboard.
Commissioned as part of Landau's Composer-in-Residency.
& Aeterna was written to pair with Henry Purcell's Dido & Aeneas and includes a Prologue to be sung before it in addition to the opera proper to be performed after with no intermission (totalling under 90 minutes).
& Aeterna requires that Dido & Aeneas be performed by the following ensemble: vln 1; vln 2; vla; vcl; dbs; and harpsichord -- Purcell's initial instrumentation -- with the addition of one percussionist playing a part arranged by Landau. & Aeterna is scored for the same forces, except that the harpsichord is replaced by a piano. (This may be easily achievable with a digital keyboard.)
List of arias: