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Kui Dong
Composer Kui Dong

Scenes from Hutong, an opera-in-progress

Definition:
1) Hutong (simplified Chinese: 胡同; traditional Chinese: 衚衕 or 胡同; pinyin: hútòng) are a type of narrow lane or alleyway in a traditional residential area of a Chinese city, especially Beijing.

2) Hutong, an opera by Kui Dong, Libretto by Monica Datta and Paul Schick, Story by Monica Datta.

Hutong is a comic opera in fifteen parts about the whimsical nature of urban coincidence and the white space between vignettes. Set during a late summer in Beijing.

Beijing, the capital city of China has over 3,000 years of history. Unfortunately, the quest for modern high-rise apartment buildings, offices and shopping malls has destroyed many authentic hu tongs located in prime areas of Beijing’s city center.
The opera is a day in the fantasy life of a hu tong, peopled by a disparate array of characters: a blind Norwegian sailor, the Beijing police department, assorted international architects, some children, a frog, all presided over by the Fenghuang, or phoenix.

Other Minds, in collaboration with Cinnabar Theater, Dartmouth College and Opera America is presenting scenes in workshop from the opera-in-progress, Hutong, by award-winning Chinese American composer, Kui Dong. Her work spans diverse genres and styles and include ballet, orchestral and chamber works, chorus, electro-acoustic music, film scores, and multi-media art, and free improvisation with a unique synthesis of influences from avant-garde experimental, jazz, electro-acoustic, and ethnic music.

This event took place on Thursday, March 12, 2020, 8:00pm @ Cinnabar Theater Petaluma, CA.

Cast:

Chelsea Hollow, soprano
Kindra Scharich, mezzo soprano
Jean-Paul Jones, tenor
Joe Meyers, tenor
Randall Wong, speaker

Instrumentalists:

Jennifer Cho, violin
Brenda Vahur, piano
Tim Dent, percussion
Mary Chun, Conductor

Concert Video

Kui Dong
Hutong workshop (performance)

Video of the run-through workshop performance of three scenes from an opera in progress by composer Kui Dong, called Hutong. The workshop took place on Thursday, March 12, 2020 at the Cinnabar Theater in Petaluma, CA.

Kui Dong
Hutong workshop (rehearsal)

Video of the rehearsal for a workshop featuring three scenes from an opera in progress by composer Kui Dong, called Hutong. Each scene is read through, then performed by cast and musicians. The workshop took place on Thursday, March 12, 2020 at the Cinnabar Theater in Petaluma, CA.

Kui Dong
Hutong workshop (discussion)

Discussion and Q&A with the composer, librettist and cast, after a performance of three scenes from an opera in progress by composer Kui Dong, called Hutong. The workshop took place on Thursday, March 12, 2020 at the Cinnabar Theater in Petaluma, CA.

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