Jake Heggie: Dead Man Walking (27 February 2021, 8:00 p.m.)

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From 8:00 p.m. on 27 February 2021, Jake Heggie's acclaimed opera, Dead Man Walking can be viewed in the Opera Stream series.

Jake Heggie’s opera Dead Man Walking poignantly reveals the reality of the death penalty, as well as the internal conflicts of the condemned prisoners and those who resist social pressure in order to help them. The San Francisco Opera commissioned Heggie to write his first opera based on the actual events related in Sister Helen Prejean’s world-famous book. This was also the first opera libretto created by dramatist and musical librettist Terrence McNally, who is also credited with Kiss of the Spider Woman and The Full Monty. The critics hailed the work enthusiastically for its courageous portrayal of both the convict and his family and the justice of the point of view of the parents of the victims.

The Hungarian State Opera production that premiered in September 2020 was staged by artistic director András Almási-Tóth. The stylised set features projected scenery created by Zsombor Czeglédi, Balázs Fügedi, and Norbert Tóth, whereas the authentic costumes were designed by Krisztina Lisztopád, the choreography was made by Eszter Lázár. The performance features Andrea Meláth as Helen Prejean, and Máté-Sólyom Nagy as Joseph de Rocher. Further roles are performed by soloist of the Opera: Gabriella Fodor, Péter Balczó, Csaba Szegedi, Beatrix Fodor, Katalin Károlyi, Andrea Brassói-Jőrös, József Mukk and Antal Cseh. The Hungarian State Opera Orchestra, Chorus (chorus master: Gábor Csiki) and Children's Chorus (chorus master: Nikolett Hajzer) are conducted by Kornél Thomas.

By arrangement with Bent Pen Music. Sole Agent: Bill Holab Music. This Opera was commissioned by the San Francisco Opera.

Photo by Péter Rákossy