A Feminist Revenge Opera by Alice Shields
Cages, sex and shadows in medieval England:
While being used and sexually abused by her uncle Pandar — who is also pimping her to his boss Troilus — Criseyde struggles to survive. In this radical feminist revision of Chaucer's "Troilus and Criseyde" the sex and violence of the patriarchy runs riot, and Criseyde is sucked despite herself into an intense love affair, immobilized in the extreme imbalance of power between the sexes. But in the end, with Chaucer's own language turned upside-down to free her, Criseyde emerges as a heroine in a dramatic retelling — from a woman's perspective — of Chaucer's famous tale.
Chamber Opera in Two Acts
Music & Libretto by Alice Shields
For Soprano, Mezzo-Soprano, Lyric Baritone, Baritone, Basso Cantante, and Ensemble:
Duration: ca.2 hours
Cage Sculptures by Helene Brandt
Soliloquy Chair – "Throne" Cage Sculpture by Helene Brandt
"Cradle" – another of the Cage Sculptures by Helene Brandt
CONCERT PREMIERES of scenes from CRISEYDE
May 11, 2008
April 24, 2008
May 27, 2009
LINKS TO CONCERT PERFORMANCE
ORDER A PDF OF THE SCORE:
Contact the American Composers Alliance at firstname.lastname@example.org or
NEW YORK TIMES REVIEW
"... a rare chance to hear Middle English sung. The melodic development and ornamentation of the intense, richly scored work reflect Ms. Shields' lengthy study of classical Indian raga." — NEW YORK TIMES, May 13, 2008
Support for concert performances of Criseyde has been generously provided by the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs, the Alice M. Ditson Fund of Columbia University, the Mary Flagler Cary Charitable Trust, American Music Center, Patsy Lu Fund for Women's Music Projects and donors Dr. Russell Palmeri and Dr. Carolyn MacGregor.
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