On Tuesday, March 17, 2020 – just a handful of days after an order from the Governor of Minnesota closed the state’s theatres – Really Spicy Opera put out a call for interest for a Quarantine Opera (Scenes) Initiative. Two dozen composer-librettist teams and a few composer-librettists responded and were given a set of prompts to write off of in just 48 hours. Submissions soon came pouring in of great comedic, musical, and dramatic quality, forcing our judges to extend the reviewing window to arrive at the final list.
After due consideration, the judges have selected four submissions to stage and virtually perform. The selected scenes for Really Spicy Opera’s Quarantine Opera Initiative are:
6 feet apart, by Bea Goodwin and Felix Jarrar
Aborted Party, by Helena Michelson
The Handoff, by Daniel Solon and Sean Pflueger
Viral, by Cecelia Raker and Keith Allegretti
Look for these scenes to be brought to life in video form, coming soon to an Internet near you!
Today’s featured educational outreach activity is a cooperative venture with the Audio Production program at Hennepin Technical College. As part of this venture, musicians from Really Spicy Opera traveled to Eden Prairie, MN to perform in-studio and provide feedback on recording, editing, and mixing techniques. This provides students with invaluable experience in working with live musicians and approaching different projects with a variety of goals.
Hot on the heels of its second revival of A Pickle, Really Spicy Opera heads to Washington, DC for the Intersections Festival. RSO will present the children’s theatre outreach half of The Princess Pirate Party Musical, a new show currently under development.
The Intersections Festival is hosted and curated by the Atlas Performing Arts Center. The Intersections Festival runs February 22-March 11, and is now on its 9th season. RSO’s appearance is part of the festival’s educational theatre outreach program for the very young, and will feature Victoria Erickson (The Clever Artifice of Harriet and Margaret) and Basil Considine.
The Princess Pirate Party Musical will play on Saturday, 3/3 @ 9 AM at the Atlas Performing Arts Center in Washington, DC. Tickets are available online.
Update: Due to blizzard conditions, this performance has been rescheduled for Monday, February 26 at Sabes JCC.
Really Spicy Opera’s award-winning production of Deborah Yarchun’s A Picklewill return January 22 for a special performance at the Sabes Jewish Community in St. Louis Park, MN. A Pickle will appear as part of the Twin Cities Jewish Humor Festival, with Angela Timberman reprising her role as Doris.
A Pickle is based on the real-life story of Doris Rubenstein and the Minnesota State Fair’s pickle-making contest. The play won the Twin Cities Arts Reader’s Best of Fringe award for the 2017 Minnesota Fringe Festival, a BroadwayWorld Regional Award for Best Original/New Work, and a BroadwayWorld Regional Award for Best Actress.
The award for “Original/New Work” honors both the production overall and the script by Deborah Yarchun. The award for “Best Actress in a Play” honors Angela Timberman.
Playwright Deborah Yarchun based her script for A Pickle on real-life events at the Minnesota State Fair, which turned into a national scandal in the early 2000s. The comedic script with a hard-hitting message struck a chord with audiences, selling out every performance at the 2017 Minnesota Fringe Festival, including an added encore performance. A follow-up engagement at Bryant-Lake Bowl also completely sold out; A Pickle can next be seen at the 2018 Twin Cities Jewish Humor Festival (Sabes Jewish Community Center, St. Louis Park, MN) on Monday, 1/22 at 7:30 PM.
Really Spicy Opera is proud to announce that its production of A Pickle will be returning for a one-night only engagement at Bryant-Lake Bowl Theater in Minneapolis. This special engagement will take place on Saturday, September 9 at 7 PM, and will reprise the 2017 Minnesota Fringe production of the play by Deborah Yarchun. Angela Timberman returns in her award-winning performance as Doris, the Pickle Lady who takes on the Minnesota State Fair.