This showcase will celebrate the debut of the Kickstarter campaign for Jarrar and Goodwin’s jazz opera Tabula Rasa , which is about the life and loves of Kiki de Montparnasse. The work is being presented by NYC arts organization Cantanti Project, and they will present the world premiere production of the opera in May 2018 at a date and venue TBA. The performances will be part of New York City Opera Alliance’s second annual Opera Fest.
The Kickstarter campaign for Tabula Rasa , titled “Kickstarting Kiki”, will give audiences members the chance to exclusively catch the team in action creating Cantanti Project’s production. The video for the campaign will be world premiered at the showcase, and audience members will be able to interact with award-winning Jarrar-Goodwin writing duo and see all the ways that donations to the project can help them achieve their creative vision.
Jarrar and Goodwin will also present selections from Songs of the Soul Beams , their award-winning song cycle which debuted at the Brooklyn Academy of Music this past June. The work will be presented by Le Poisson Rouge in early 2018 at a date to-be-determined. There will also be performances of selections from Jarrar’s second opera, The Fall of the House of Usher , based on the eponymous Edgar Allan Poe story. This work premiered last year to great commercial and critical success and toured off-Broadway at The DiMenna Center last April.
The featured singers on the program are Sara Lin Yoder, Frank Fainer, Eugenia Forteza and Emily Hughes, among others. Felix Jarrar will accompany them on piano and co-host the evening with Brittany Goodwin.
About the Artists
Composer-pianist Felix Jarrar has performed at Carnegie Hall's Weill Recital Hall and Merkin Concert Hall. He won prizes in composition competitions held by the National Federation of Music Clubs, Sparks Wiry & Cries, the New York Arts Ensemble, the Connecticut Music Teachers National Association, and Webster University. His second opera, The Fall of the House of Usher, has deep personal resonance for him. The work world premiered in a fully-staged production in March 2016 at Marlboro College in Vermont. The opera received its New York premiere at the DiMenna Center that April. Jarrar presented his analysis paper, Die Lorelei, at the 2016 BGSU Graduate Student Conference. This past December, his first string quartet, Mosaic of Myself: a Walt Whitman Experience, premiered at the Church of the Intercession. His latest project, Songs of the Soul Beams, with a libretto by Brittany Goodwin, premiered at BAM on June 4th, 2017. Jarrar loves to read, hike, and watch reruns of Law and Order SVU. Jarrar received a B.A. from Marlboro College with highest honors, and studied composition with Stanley Charkey and piano with Robert Merfeld. He is currently pursuing a M.M. in composition at Brooklyn College on the Cerf Music Scholarship.
Lyricist/Librettist Brittany Goodwin is fresh off her premier at BAM with her Songs of the Soul Beams, brought sonically to life by composer Felix Jarrar. She is writing an adaptation of Kafka’s Metamorphosis for composter Chris Poovey at the University of Northern Texas that will also have it’s premier this spring. She has written adaptations of A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland and A Christmas Carol. She has staged her original works as well as "the greats" at La Mama Experimental Theatre, the DiMenna Center for Classical Music, BAM and National Opera Center. For more on this artist, follow her on social media @be_goodwin and visit her website, begoodwin.com.