The opera Gloria—A Pig Tale, which will run for three performances at the Met between May 29 and June 1, is a wicked twist on the classic fairy tale—featuring a heroine pig, an unlikely (and wild) knight in shining armor, and a prince with an ulterior motive.
The Grace Rainey Rogers Auditorium stage will be inventively converted into a farm where the story can unfold in true operatic style, with rich, multilayered sets, a vaudevillian and dynamic score composed by HK Gruber, and unforgettable costumes. Designed by Doug Fitch of Giants Are Small and presented as part of the inaugural NY PHIL BIENNIAL, Gloria will be brought to life with incredible detail in an unprecedented transformation of the Met's main stage.
In this new production, Fitch has imagined Gloria's world with a mud pit, a pond (inside of which the New York Philharmonic's acclaimed music director, Alan Gilbert, will conduct), puffy clouds, and brilliant projections that give the illusion of open sky. Musicians from the Axiom Ensemble will perform onstage as well, with music stands made of scrap wood to complement the onstage farm-scape.
Gloria is a witty theater piece that takes on contemporary social aspirations and explores life in excess. The two-act opera takes place on a farm in the mountains, where we meet Gloria the pig—a soprano, of course—who has beautiful, curly hair, and longs for a prince so desperately that she blindly falls in love with the charming butcher. So smitten, she doesn't see the signs of inevitable doom until her wild pig hero, Rodrigo, swoops in to save her.
In collaboration with the Juilliard School, Gloria will feature soprano Lauren Snouffer, mezzo-soprano Brenda Patterson, baritone Carlton Ford, tenor Alexander Lewis, and bass Kevin Burdette.
The costumes, described by Fitch as "soft, full-body masks," allow the singers to inhabit their characters while still projecting the beautiful subtleties found in the music. And, since four of the five singers will slip into multiple roles, the costumes need to be as versatile as the performers who wear them.
The curtain goes up on Thursday, May 29, at 7:00 p.m., with two more performances on Friday, May 30, at 7:00 p.m., and Sunday, June 1, at 2:00 p.m. Tickets are $60 and "Bring the Kids for $1" tickets are available.
To purchase tickets to Gloria—A Pig Tale, or any other Met Museum Presents event, visit www.metmuseum.org/tickets; call 212-570-3949; or stop by the Great Hall Box Office, open Monday–Saturday, 11:00 a.m.–3:30 p.m.
These performances are part of the NY PHIL BIENNIAL, a musical playground of the here and now.
Production design by Giants Are Small.