OPERA NEWS - Ellen Reid and Roxie Perkin's p r i s m named Best New Opera by Music Critics Association of North America
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24 July 2019

Ellen Reid and Roxie Perkin's p r i s m named Best New Opera by Music Critics Association of North America

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Anna Schubert and Rebecca Jo Loeb in p r i s m
Photo by Noah Stern Weber

p r i s ma daring new opera by composer Ellen Reid and librettist Roxie Perkins chronicling the haunting aftermath of sexual assault, has been recognized by the Music Critics Association of North America as this year's Best New Opera. 

Reid and Perkin's p r i s m, which in April was named as the winner of this year's Pulitzer Prize for Music, premiered in a production by James Darrah as part of LA Opera's Off Grand series in November 2018, and was commissioned and co-produced by Beth Morrison Projects

"p r i s m is a gripping, probing work about a fraught mother-daughter relationship and the loss of an artificial, protected realm," writes the MCANA committee in a press release issued today. "Ellen Reid’s arresting music, broad in its stylistic range and rich in its solo vocal, choral and orchestral palette, vividly matches and intensifies the opera’s mysterious, psychologically charged dramatic essence. We at MCANA are thrilled to honor Reid and librettist Roxie Perkins with the 2019 Best New Opera Award." 

The MCANA Award, which was first presented in 2017, is bestowed annually by a committee comprised of distinguished music critics and is the only award of its type in to honor both a work's composer and librettist for a new opera premiered in North America. Nominations for this year's award were solicited by MCANA members, and finalists for the prize were selected by the awards committee co-chaired by Heidi Waleson, opera critic of The Wall Street Journal, and George Loomis, longtime contributor to the Financial Times and Musical America, as well as members Arthur Kaptainis, who writes for the Montreal Gazette and Ludwig van Toronto; John Rockwell, former critic and arts editor of The New York Times and co-New York correspondent of Opera (UK); and Alex Ross, music critic of The New Yorker

Other works that were finalists and runners up for the prize included An American Soldier by composer Huang Ruo and librettist David Henry Hwang; and Proving Up by composer Missy Mazzoli and librettist Royce Vavrek. The inaugural MCANA Award for Best New Opera went to Missy Mazzoli and Royce Vavrek's Breaking the Waves, and last year's award was given to David Hertzberg for The Wake World.  

This year's award will be presented to Reid and Perkins on Friday, July 26, 2019 at the opening reception of the MCANA Annual Meeting at Tanglewood. spacer

More information can be found at the Music Critics Association of North America.

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