Critically acclaimed composer Gregory Spears and MN Opera president Ryan Taylor will talk about the new opera, “Fellow Travelers,” at Quatrefoil Library on June 6. The panel discussion, led by MN Opera teaching artist Pablo Siqueiros, will shed light on the creation of this new work, ahead of its June 16 regional premiere in Minneapolis.
Spears composed “Fellow Travelers” with librettist Greg Pierce, and it had its world premiere at Cincinnati Opera in 2016. Twin Cities-based Peter Rothstein directs the Minneapolis staging of “Fellow Travelers.” It’s based on Thomas Mallon’s 2007 novel, a gay romance set against the menacing political intrigue of the McCarthy era in Washington, D.C., that targeted gays and communist sympathizers in the federal government. Its two main characters are an idealistic young political staffer who falls in love with a handsome State Department official.
New York Times critic Anthony Tommasini praised the opera’s originality and “dramatic urgency” and called Spears’ music “richly evocative.”
Spears has been commissioned by The Lyric Opera of Chicago, The Cincinnati Opera, Houston Grand Opera, Seraphic Fire, and the JACK Quartet among others.
This “Behind the Curtain” event presented by MN Opera and Quatrefoil is free, but donations to benefit the library will be accepted. Space is limited, so arrive early to ensure a seat. The opera runs June 16-26 at the Cowles Center in downtown Minneapolis.
Follow Quatrefoil on Facebook, or go to qlibrary.org to browse the catalog or for more information, including information on how to become a volunteer.