Saturday, January 6, 2018

Sasha Cooke and Kelly Markgraf reprise transgender opera As One

Sasha Cooke and Kelly Markgraf rehearsing As One
The real life husband and wife team of Kelly Markgraf and Sasha Cooke will reprise their roles of "Hannah before" and "Hannah after" in Laura Kaminsky's As One at the Hawaii Opera. There will be four performances from January 11-16 at the Aloha Tower Pier 10 Cruise Ship Terminal in Honolulu. Tickets are available online.

The couple premiered the piece in 2014 at The Brooklyn Academy of Music and will perform it together again at the Chautauqua Opera on August 7th.

Two singers, a baritone and a mezzo-soprano, together portray the character Hannah.  The two singers embody a young boy who knows he is different but can't understand how or why. The 70-minute opera traces the life of young Hannah through her eventual gender reassignment. 
Kaminsky was inspired to write the opera after reading an article in the New York Times in 2008 about a New Jersey marriage in which one of the parties transitioned from male to female, transforming the couple from straight to gay. The opera is based on the life experience of noted filmmaker Kimberly Reed. 

After wrapping up As One, the couple travels to the drier climate of Arizona, where they will perform a concert version of Leonard Bernstein's Trouble in Tahiti, his one-act opera from the early ‘50s about life in suburban America. Performances are with the Tucson Symphony and run from February 2-4. 

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