Music by Jake Landau
Libretto by Jake Landau and Andrea DelGiudice
Written in English.
Premiered onstage 2021 at The Narnia Festival in Narni, Italy, conducted by the composer. Commissioned as part of Landau's Composer-in-Residency.
American premiere November 2023 at Oklahoma City University, directed by Andrea DelGiudice.
Reading in New York produced by Off-Brand Opera.
ABOUT THE OPERA
Against the dark, sinful city of 18th-century Venice, the Ospedale della Pietà (a real historical institution) glows with hope, humor, and music. The Pietà is an orphanage that takes girls off the street and trains them to sing and play instruments, forming one of Europe’s most elite orchestras of the day. Daughters of the Pietà (figlie) always perform from behind an impenetrable lattice, hidden from their audiences for propriety’s sake. Though they are cared for there, the figlie are kept under strict lock and key.
Outside the walls, the institution’s wealthy padroni, Ugo and Editta, have raised teenage Giorgio as their adopted grandson. When Giorgio falls in love with a figlia named Genovieffa and takes her home to meet his grandparents, long-repressed family secrets rush to the surface. Editta, revealed to be a former figlia who will eventually become Suor Angelica’s La Zia Principessa, sees in Genovieffa a chance to fight her way out from years of shame over what she once did to her young niece Angelica—Giorgio’s mother. But will Editta be able to face down the truth of her trauma and have mercy on herself, even as the past begins to repeat itself?
- - -
Editor and Cinematographer Jacob Maximillian Baron
Director Andrea DelGiudice
Starring Devony Smith Claire Leyden
Sishel Claverie Alexia Bigari
Stacey Canterbury Jordan Weatherson Pitts
Erik Van Heyningen Erin Kennedy
Kristina Shafranski Kayla Faccilongo
Christine Duncan Melanie Long
Program for the filmed reading.
Trailer for the filmed reading.
- - -
Pietà was written for the Narnia Festival's 2020 season to be paired with Puccini's Suor Angelica.
c. 1 hour, 15 minutes
Chamber orchestra (World Premiere)
Full orchestra (the same forces as Suor Angelica; American Premiere)