Mimesis Ensemble Presents
Sumeida's Song [WORLD PREMIERE]
Wednesday, April 13, 2011
Ambitious work marks the first major opera written by an Arab composer
Length: 1 hr 30 mins
Seating: General Admission
You choose your seats when you get to the theater.
On Wednesday, April 13, 2011 the Mimesis Orchestra presents the world premiere of the critically acclaimed composer, Mohammed Fairouz’s first-ever opera, Sumeida’s Song (www.sumeidassong.com), at the Ethical Culture Society in New York City. The work represents the first major opera by an Arab composer, and is a major sprawling piece based on the classic Tawfiq El Hakim play, Song of Death. As told by the great playwright, the opera follows the return of Alwan to his Upper Egyptian peasant village, and his attempts to bring modernity to darkness in an effort to break a never ending cycle of violence. The opera also clearly dipicts the grave consequences of this pioneering energy, containing a moral lesson for a troubled region by intermingling classical tragedy with the unharnessed energy of youthful hope and idealism.
Sumeida’s Song is an evening length work for full-orchestra conducted by Scott Dunn. Joining the Mimesis Orchestra are soprano Jo Ellen Miller, mezzo-soprano Barbara Rearick, tenor Robert Mack, and baritone Randall Scarlata. It will be a concert production. A portion of the ticket sales will go towards The Association for the protection of the Environment (A.P.E.), a charitable organization working to improve the lives of the poor in Egypt with an interest in protecting the environment specifically with regards to man-made household waste.
Scott Dunn, conductor
Jo Ellen Miller, soprano [Mabrouka]
Barbara Rearick, mezzo-soprano [Asakir]
Robert Mack, tenor [Sumeida]
Randall Scarlata, baritone [Alwan]
Mohammed Fairouz (www.mohammedfairouz.com)
Straddling Eastern and Western idioms, Mohammed Fairouz, one of the most frequently performed composers of his generation, has emerged as a force on the musical scene. His music has been received at venues such as Carnegie Hall, Boston’s Symphony Hall, the Kennedy Center and internationally throughout the United States, Europe, the Middle East and Australia. He has received commissions from Musicians for Harmony, Northeastern University, the Imani Winds (Legacy Commission), the Cygnus Ensemble, Counter)induction, Alea III (Boston University), Alwan for the Arts and the Second Instrumental Unit among others.
His music has been championed by some of the foremost performers including the Borromeo and Lydian String Quartets, Imani Winds, members of the Boston Symphony Orchestra, the violinist James Buswell as well as the conductors Gunther Schuller, Joshua Jacobson, David Hoose, John Page
and Yoon Jae Lee. Among the eminent singers that have promoted his wealth of vocal music are Kate Lindsey, D’Anna Fortunato, Lynn Torgove and Randall Scarlata.
Mimesis Orchestra (www.mimesisensemble.org)
The Mimesis Orchestra is a New York City based ensemble dedicated to promoting contemporary music through dynamic performances. Fostering close relationships with the composers they program, musicians are often coached and/or conducted by the composers themselves. After only two seasons, the ensemble has worked directly with Martin Bresnick, Robert Cogan, Richard Danielpour, Halim El-Dabh, Pozzi Escot, Anthony De Ritis, Mohammed Fairouz, John Heiss, David McMullin, Malcolm Peyton, Tobias Picker, Gunther Schuller, Scott Wheeler, and Yehudi Wyner.
Members of the ensemble are among the most promising musicians of the upcoming generation. They come from renowned conservatories and universities, including the New England Conservatory, the Juilliard School, the Curtis Institute of Music, Yale University, Manhattan School of Music, Mannes
College, the Cleveland Institute of Music, Boston Conservatory, and Columbia University. Members of the ensemble frequently appear in prestigious venues and festivals, such as Carnegie Hall, Alice Tully Hall, the Aldeburgh Festival’s Britten-Pears Program, Tanglewood Music Center, Banff Music Centre,
and the Aspen Summer Music Festival. These vigorous advocates for the flourishing of music are passionately dedicated to the performance of contemporary music.