You, the Bible, & me

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Date

2014-08

Authors

Hunt, John Michael

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Abstract

This work is a collaboration between myself and my good friend Diana Silver who is the librettist of the work; the text is used with full permission from the author. It is conceptually a blend between a musical and a chamber opera: sung in a musical theater style, but without scenes of dialogue and containing very few spoken words. It features three actors: Girl 1 (high voice), Girl 2 (medium/low voice), and Boy 1 (medium voice) who rotate roles throughout the work. The work begins and ends with a telling of the Biblical story of Sodom and Gomorrah, with the in-between material consisting of three large scenes with a main character, a supporting character, and a character who only quotes directly from the Bible (various translations). In these scenes, the main character presents and works out a very personal conflict while interacting with the other two characters in various ways. The conflict is also invariably discussed through the lens of sometimes unexpected lessons learned from the story of Sodom and Gomorrah. The accompaniment is scored as a piano reduction (not a piano part) and is intended to be flexibly scored for the combination of piano and any other combination of instruments. It is also notable that this is not the complete work, but a sufficient portion of it as per request by the thesis supervisor. The portion submitted includes: the Prologue and Epilogue, which serve as framing for the entire piece and tell/retell the story of Sodom and Gomorrah, later to be drawn upon in the body of the work; the first large vignette, which involves a conflicted woman (Katie) coming to terms with newfound sexual expression; Katie's “aria,” in which she has grown confident in her newfound freedom and expresses it openly; and James's “aria” (to follow the second vignette), in which he laments the loss of his mother's relationship but also welcomes his new life and love.

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