Category Archives: Opera

The Lost Operas of Mozart


This past year I’ve had the pleasure of working with City Opera Vancouver on The Lost Operas of Mozart. I wrote a script tying together Mozart’s unfinished operas. The show opens October 25th, 2016, at Christ Church Cathedral (8pm).

“In his early twenties, Mozart started three operas he never completed. Two are Italian comedies, and the third is a German Romance. Each is a tantalizing hint of what might have been. Each is the voice of Mozart himself. City Opera Vancouver offers an event premiere: three forgotten operas in one evening of wonderful theatre, delightful music, and original exploration. This re-construction will be a Canadian first. In two acts and two hours, The Lost Operas of Mozart will delight, inform and enchant. Stage direction and production concept by Alan Corbishley, original script by Maria Reva, and set in our own time at the Gates of Limbo.”

Oct 27,28 and 29, 2016 at 8pm
Christ Church Cathedral, Vancouver
Tickets: $48/$24, general admission, available at the door or online.

Robyn Driedger-Klassen, soprano
Elaina Moreau, soprano
Rose-Ellen Nichols, mezzo
Frédérik Robert, tenor
Samuel Chan, bari-tenor
Alan MacDonald, baritone
Michael MacKinnon, bass
Bramwell Tovey, impresario

Janet Lea, Nora Kelly, co-producers
Alan Corbishley, stage director
Charles Barber, music director and conductor
Maria Reva, original script
Ines Ortner, costume design
John Webber, lighting design
Jayson McLean, production manager

More info:
City Opera Vancouver website
The Georgia Straight

North Shore News interviewed me about the script here.

Photo: Rose-Ellen Nichols, Bramwell Tovey and Elaina Moreau in The Lost Operas of Mozart. Photographer: Emily Cooper.

Watch the Hound Premiere

Chamber opera premiere by Erato Ensemble
Composer: Stefan Hintersteininger
Libretto: Maria Reva

Saturday, March 21st, 8:00pm
Orpheum Annex, 823 Seymour Street, Vancouver
Tickets: $15 advance (available here), $25 at the door

Watch the Hound is a chamber opera based on the Orpheus and Eurydice myth. Orpheus, reputed charmer of all things living, descends to the Underworld to rescue his wife, only to find her unwilling to leave.

Program Notes:

“[Eurydice’s] only recorded words were sighs of pain. She was never really a woman, always an allegory, sketchy and unsatisfactory.” (Ann Roe, Orpheus: The Song of Life)

While many versions of the Orpheus and Eurydice myth exist, the general story is as follows: Eurydice was a tree spirit, and Orpheus sang her to life. Shortly afterward Eurydice died of a snake bite, and Orpheus set out to rescue his beloved from the Underworld, land of the dead. Hades allowed Orpheus to retrieve Eurydice on one condition: Orpheus was to walk in front of her without looking back until they both reached the land of the living. When Orpheus stepped back into the Upperworld, however, he turned back to make sure Eurydice was still behind him, and she fell back down to the Underworld.

While researching the Orpheus and Eurydice myth for Watch the Hound, I found bountiful information on Orpheus but relatively little on Eurydice. Her character seems only half-formed when she is alive, and I wanted to explore this idea. How would she fare by herself in the Underworld? When, in the original myth, Orpheus turns back to make sure Eurydice is behind him, is he simply impatient or does he doubt she will follow him out?

About Erato Ensemble:

Erato is an art-song chamber collective formed in 2006 by tenor/composer William George and soprano/composer Catherine Laub. Erato’s mission is to preserve the art-song tradition, while creating new works in the genre, and to advance the public’s appreciation of the arts by providing performances in public places. (


Illustration: Maria Reva