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OUR Mothly NewsLetter - January 2023

What’s Ahead for Alliance for New Music-Theatre in 2023?

As we continue to develop major productions of new works in 2023, we work to amplify our commitment to foster professional development and collaborative opportunities of artists across cultures and to engage audiences in the creative process across all our programs to promote a deeper understanding of the transformative power of music-theatre in its many forms.

We embark on a series of monthly community workshops and master classes that can advance our projects and bring the greater community into the excitement of process and the art of collaboration

Youth Chorus - Coro de la comunidad

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Belated Holiday Greetings from our Youth Chorus

 "Coro de la comunidad.!"

On Dec 15 our "Coro" performed at GALA Hispanic Theatre as part of their Paso Nuevo Youth Program Showcase. Under the direction of Leo Herrera, it has grown in one year, attracting students as young as precocious third graders up through high school and is conducted in weekly after-school classes taught in Spanish and based in the heart of DC’s bilingual neighborhood. Students acquire music literacy skills, learn basics of choral singing, and practice repertoire while experiencing the joy making music and making new friends. Learn how to join HERE.

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Master Class in Afghan Music’s Vocal Techniques and Open “Rehearsal”

On Sunday, April 23, Alliance is hosting Afghan singer, musician and educator Humayun Khan to lead a master class in Afghan vocal techniques at George Mason University. In addition to teaching about the modes and complex scales of Afghanistan’s rich musical heritage, he will introduce a few important melodies and repertoire as well as incorporating one or two songs from our original music-theatre work in development, Women of Troy; Voices from Afghanistan. This will be followed by an informal sharing for George Mason students and faculty, friends, family, and invited guests.

This workshop is specifically designed as a cross-cultural experience for Afghan women and local female artists who wish to support and learn more about the traditional music of Afghanistan.

 We invite Afghan women living in the DMV, who want to reconnect with their cultural roots to join us as we support keeping the music alive in this free master class. 

For more details to participate, go to our Afghan Project webpage  HERE. Or contact us at info@newmusictheatre.org 

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At the end of the class, we will open up the work to a small audience of Afghan and other friends and join Humayun in a demo of what we have learned plus share a handful of short videos Alliance has been commissioning by Afghan filmmaker Airokhsh Faiz Qasary, interviewing female artists speaking about practicing other art forms, including poetry, calligraphy, painting, and dance.

 

Celebrate with us the resiliency and creative artistry of Afghan women as our company members stretch our individual professional capacities and understandings.

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Workshop for On the Road to Arivaca

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From May 1-5, we will conduct a weeklong intensive workshop of our Act II of On the Road to Arivaca in DC at the Scottish Rite Center and will be sponsored by the consortium of embassies of Central American and Caribbean embassies.

On the Road to Arivaca is an original opera by composer Rosino Serrano, based in Mexico City, and librettist Susan Galbraith. The opera will put the audience “on the road” in difficult situations that surround the many issues of immigration, national boundaries, and cross-cultural-and-linguistic engagement. How does one act when one has to decide in a split second on the fate of a fellow human being?

The workshop will feature Javier Arrey as The Samaritan, Israel Lozano as The Sojourner, Darcy Monsalve as Maria, and Melisa Bonetti as Consuelo, as well as Alliance’s youth chorus, coro de la comunidad. We performed excerpts from Act I in October 2022 at GW’s Corcoran School of the Arts and Design as part of a conference on refugees and global migration sponsored by EU’s cultural arm, EUNIC.

Join us on Friday afternoon, May 5 at the end of the workshop for an open rehearsal to experience the voices and Serrano’s beautiful music. More details are on our On the Road to Arivaca webpage HERE.

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Composer Librettist Studio

From June 3 to 17, we will host our first full Composer Librettist Studio since our inaugural studio in 1994, which seeded our company. 

A major national training program, these “studios” have been hosted regularly since 1984 in NYC, Los Angeles, the Twin Cities, and Chicago among other music centers. It debuted in DC in 1994 under the joint auspices of the Kennedy Center, Signature Theatre, Woolly Mammoth, and American University. From that initial group of 15 trainees, Alliance for New Music-Theatre was founded. The company has been invited to accept the mantle for carrying the program forward in this region.

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The Composer Librettist Studio is designed as an intensive workshop that demands a commitment of all participants for two and a half weeks. Designed and led by Ben Krywosz, formerly of Opera America, then Minnesota Opera and now operated under Nautilus Theater, the workshop brings together 5 composers, 5 librettists, and 5 singer-actors. All are carefully selected to represent diversity of experience, ages, cultural backgrounds, and styles of music and textual expression. Participants will pair up in different configurations and assignments learning about composition, libretto writing, and most of all, principles of collaboration. At the end of the period, everyone will have worked with all others, having created a total of 25 new pieces.

At the end of the intensive workshop, we will present an informal sharing of those pieces followed by a conversation about the process.

For more details and to apply to participate, go to our Composer Librettist webpage HERE.

Some writers may have had no previous experience of writing for music-theater per se, but all are stretched out of their comfort zone and challenged to be risk-takers, even pushing the envelope of what music-theater can be. All participants are given a stipend to participate and are expected to participate in all session.

Some of the writers who are alums of the Composer Librettist Studio program include Eric Overmeyer, David Ives, Kira Obolensky, Kelley Rourke, José Cruz Gonzáles, Nilo Cruz, and Caridad Svich.  Composers have included Paul Dresher, Ricky Ian Gordon, Mary Ellen Childs, and O-Lan Jones.

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