After 15 years the Boston University College of Fine Arts’ annual Fringe Festival continues to be a popular fixture in the fall event schedule. A collaboration between the School of Music Opera Institute and the School of Theatre, this year’s festival runs October 7-29 at the Boston University Theatre’s Lane-Comley Studio 210 and features works by Béla Bartók, Jake Heggie, and Lynn Nottage.
This year’s offering from the School of Theatre is Nottage’s Intimate Apparel, which was the 2004 winner of the New York Drama Critics Circle Award. Intimate Apparel follows a single black seamstress working toward a better life at a time when race and class limited one’s place in society. Besides being part of this year’s Fringe Festival, Intimate Apparel is also one of the featured events of this year’s BU Alumni Weekend, which will celebrate the legacy of the black experience at Boston University.
Sharon Daniels, Director of Opera Programs at Boston University, founded the BU Fringe Festival in 1997 with the goal of cultivating a broader audience for opera. In keeping with the original theme of presenting unconventional repertoire in a unique performance experience, the School of Music Opera Institute has programmed Bartók’s Bluebeard’s Castle and Jake Heggie’s Three Decembers, as well as the annual Art Song Meets Theatre, which will feature staged songs by Mr. Heggie, with the composer serving as the accompanist. Art Song Meets Theatre concludes a two-week residency with Mr. Heggie.
All three opera offerings will tie into CFA’s new Keyword Initiative, which focuses on the theme of violence for this inaugural year. Performances, lectures, collaborations, and discussion will focus on art’s response to the different aspects of violence in our society, including the domestic violence of Bluebeard’s Castle, the dark family secrets and grudges of Three Decembers, and the reflections on September 11 in Art Song Meets Theatre.
Learn more about the 15th Annual Fringe Festival at www.bu.edu/cfa/fringe.
Bluebeard’s Castle V
Music by Béla Bartók
Libretto by Béla Balázs
Based on a French fairy tale by Charles Perrault
Jim Petosa, director
William Lumpkin, music director
A psychologically probing tale of a young bride’s insistence on opening all the locked doors of her new husband’s castle. Despite his protestations, she persists, with disturbing consequences.
Friday, October 7, 8:00pm
Saturday, October 8, 6:00pm
Saturday, October 8, 8:00pm
Sunday, October 9, 2:00pm
Three Decembers V
Music by Jake Heggie
Libretto by Gene Scheer
Based on an original play by Terrence McNally
Tomer Zvulun, director
Allison Voth, music director
This powerful and poignant one-act opera explores the painful and complex relationships between a famous actress and her two grown children, as they unfold the family’s hidden truths: infidelity, separation, homophobia and AIDS, tragedy, and loss.
Friday, October 14, 8:00pm
Saturday, October 15, 8:00pm
Sunday, October 16, 2:00pm
Sunday, October 16, 6:00pm
Intimate Apparel *
Lynn Nottage, playwright
Judy Braha, director
In 1905, a black New York City seamstress sews lingerie for clients ranging from wealthy white patrons to prostitutes. “…thoughtful, affecting…The play offers poignant commentary on an era when the cut and color of one’s dress—and of course, skin—determined whom one could and could not marry, sleep with, even talk to in public.” —Variety.
Saturday, October 22, 2:00pm (includes post-show discussion with cast)
Saturday, October 22, 8:00pm
Sunday, October 23, 2:00pm (includes post-show discussion with cast)
Wednesday, October 26, 10:00am and 7:30pm
Saturday, October 29, 2:00pm and 8:00pm
Art Song Meets Theatre: Jake Heggie on Jake Heggie V
This evening of staged songs concludes a residency by renowned composer Jake Heggie, who joins singers from the School of Music to perform selections from his vast song literature, including a new cycle marking the 10th anniversary of the 9/11 tragedy.
Friday, October 28, 8:00pm
* = Production included in School of Theatre subscription package
All artists and programs are subject to change; please check back for the most up to date schedules and program information.
Art Song Meets Theatre: Free admission, but reservations required. Call 617.353.5201 for information.
All other productions: $7 General Admission; One free ticket with BU ID, subject to availability.
Box Office: BostonTheatreScene.com or 617.933.8600
Boston University Theatre, Stewart F. Lane and Bonnie Comley Studio 210
264 Huntington Avenue, Boston
T Green Line, E line, Symphony stop
T Orange Line, Mass Ave stop
Founded in 1839, Boston University is an internationally recognized private research university with more than 30,000 students participating in undergraduate, graduate, and professional programs. BU consists of 17 colleges and schools along with a number of multi-disciplinary centers and institutes which are central to the school’s research and teaching mission. The Boston University College of Fine Arts was created in 1954 to bring together the School of Music, the School of Theatre, and the School of Visual Arts. The University’s vision was to create a community of artists in a conservatory-style school offering professional training in the arts to both undergraduate and graduate students, complemented by a liberal arts curriculum for undergraduate students. Since those early days, education at the College of Fine Arts has begun on the BU campus and extended into the city of Boston, a rich center of cultural, artistic and intellectual activity.