NYU Skirball will present the North American premiere of Toshio Hosokawa’s HANJO on September 30 and October 2, 2022. Produced by Catapult Opera, the work features three singers and dancer Saori Tsukada with live music by the internationally acclaimed Talea Ensemble, conducted by Neal Goren. Hanjo is directed by the renowned Italian director/ choreographer Luca Veggetti. Shown: Miwako Handa in Luca Veggetti’s production of Hanjo at Suntory Hall, Tokyo in 2009. Drawing by Moe Yoshida. Credit: Courtesy of Suntory Music Foundation
Produced by Catapult Opera
Friday, September 30 & Sunday, October 2
“The musical language of Hanjo is spare and often otherworldly, full of ethereal bowings, a shimmering celesta and harp, but also capable of erupting in unexpected violence as notes are aggressively bent and even ricocheted across the orchestra.” – A. J. Goldmann, Opera News, 2013
NYU Skirball will present the North American premiere of Toshio Hosokawa’s Hanjo, directed by Luca Veggetti and produced by Catapult Opera, on Friday, September 30 at 7:30 pm and Sunday, October 2 at 2:00 pm at NYU Skirball. Neal Goren conducts.
An example of Japanese storytelling brilliantly realized by one of Japan’s most important living classical music composers, Toshio Hosokawa’s mesmerizing and haunting opera is based on Hanjo from Yukio Mishima’s “Five Modern Nō Plays” which was inspired by a 14th-century Noh play. First performed in Aix-en-Provence in 2004, this internationally celebrated opera has since received numerous productions throughout Europe and Asia. This new production is directed by the renowned Italian choreographer Luca Veggetti, a frequent collaborator of Hosokawa, who has staged critically acclaimed productions of Hanjo in Germany and Tokyo. Neal Goren, Catapult Opera’s Founding Artistic Director, will conduct the Talea Ensemble. The production also features lighting/scenic design by Clifton Taylor, visual design by Moe Yoshida, and costume design by Peter Speliopoulos.
The cast is headed by soprano Eri Nakamura in the role of Hanako (who last month created a sensation for her portrayal of Madam Butterfly at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden), with mezzo-soprano Abigail Fischer as Jitsuko, and baritone Adam Richardson as Yoshio. Silent Figure will be performed by theater artist Saori Tsukada. Hanjo will be performed in English with a libretto by Hosokawa based on Mishima’s Hanjo translation by Donald Keene.
On Wednesday, September 14 at 6:30 pm, Japan Society will host a talk with Neal Goren and Luca Veggetti. The evening will begin with an introduction to Yukio Mishima’s original script by Professor Satoko Naito and will culminate with live singing of the opera’s centerpiece aria. NYU Skirball Hanjo ticket buyers will receive a comp code for a free ticket to Japan Society’s event. For more info: Japan Society/Hanjo
Catapult Opera’s mission is to expand the operatic canon by presenting masterpieces from non-Western and under-represented cultures in order to build new audiences while engaging and retaining existing audiences. Hanjo is the company’s first live production. Talea Ensemble is comprised of nineteen of New York City’s finest classically trained musicians, with a mission to champion musical creativity, cultivate curious listeners, and bring visionary new works to life with vibrant performances that remain in the audience’s imagination long after a concert.
Toshio Hosokawa is Japan’s pre-eminent living composer and is among the foremost opera composers of our time. His opera Matsukaze received its American premiere at the Lincoln Center Festival in 2013 to rapturous reviews. He has composed operas, oratorio and instrumental music and is co-founder and artistic director of the Japanese Festival for Contemporary Music.
ABOUT NYU SKIRBALL
NYU Skirball, located in the heart of Greenwich Village, is one of New York City’s major presenters of international work, and has been the premier venue for cultural and performing arts events in lower Manhattan since 2003. The 800-seat theater, led by Director Jay Wegman, provides a home for internationally renowned artists, innovators, and thinkers and presents ground-breaking events ranging from re-inventions of the classics to cutting-edge premieres, in genres ranging from dance, theater and performance arts to comedy, music and film.
NYU Skirball’s unique position within New York University enables it to draw on the University’s intellectual riches and resources to enhance its programming with dialogues, public forums and conversations with artists, philosophers, scientists, Nobel Laureates, and journalists. nyuskirball.org.
Hanjo will run Friday, September 30 at 7:30 pm and Sunday, October 2 at 2:00 pm. Tickets are $50 and can be purchased online at Hanjo Tickets; by visiting the box office in person, Wednesday – Friday from 2:00 pm – 6:00 pm; or by calling 212.998.4941. NYU Skirball is located at 566 LaGuardia Place at Washington Square, New York, New York, 10012.
NYU Skirball mandates proof of vaccination for all audience members, performers, crew, and venue staff. Face masks will be required at all times. For complete Covid precautions, visit nyuskirball.org.
NYU Skirball’s presenting programs are made possible with support from the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of the Office of the Governor and the New York State Legislature; and by Howard Gilman Foundation; FACE Contemporary Theater and FUSED (French U.S. Exchange in Dance), programs of FACE Foundation in partnership with Villa Albertine with support from the Florence Gould Foundation, The Ford Foundation, Institut français (Paris), the French Ministry of Culture, and private donors; General Delegation of the Government of Flanders to the USA; Collins Building Services; Marta Heflin Foundation; Mertz Gilmore Foundation; as well as our valued donors through memberships, commissioning, and Stage Pass Fund support.
Subways: A, B, C, D, E, F, M to West 4th St.; R & W to 8th Street; 6 to Astor Place.
Programs, artists, and ticket prices are subject to change.
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