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On paper, opera is an art form that involves words and music. But of course opera doesn’t live on paper. It only comes alive through the people who perform it and the collaborative effort of those onstage and backstage.
If we look at the process of creating an opera, we can begin to see just how much collaboration is involved. The process begins with words, then music ignites those words into something new, then performers and creative teams come in and spark that music and that story into something new. As the librettist—the writer who creates an opera’s words, characters, and story—you get to be at the beginning of this magic.
In this course, you will gain knowledge of the fundamental building blocks of a libretto—words, imagery, scenes, character desire, and story. As the writer, the words and story are your contribution. The music—which also tells the story—is out of your hands! But as you create the story and as you write words that performers will sing, you need to be thinking musically. How to do this? How do you “make room” for music in a story?
We will listen to contemporary opera. In the final weeks of the course, an opera composer will put an excerpt of our words to music. You will see how music and the collaborative process will bring new life to your words and ideas!