Photo by Cory Weaver

The Juliet Letters

By Elvis Costello

Saturday, January 28, 2017  |  8:00 p.m.
Sunday, January 29, 2017  |  2:00 p.m.

Michael and Ginger Frost Production Arts Building
712 E. 18th St., KCMO 64108

Elvis Costello’s The Juliet Letters were written in 1992 and recorded by the artist himself, together with the Brodsky Quartet. A collection of songs for voice and string quartet, with a few quartet-only interludes, they had an unusual inspiration: Costello heard that the lovelorn actually write letters to Shakespeare’s Juliet and leave them at her supposed ‘balcony’ in Verona, Italy.  Costello came up with his own stylized “letters” and set them to music, using the idea as a platform for the exploration of young love. Musically the material lies somewhere between that of his pop albums and his Shakespearean orchestral ballet Il Sogno of 2004, a more purely “classical” work. Elvis Costello’s emotional and poignant renderings of some of these letters became the song cycle The Juliet Letters.  Rolling Stone stated, “While a project as ambitious as The Juliet Letters might have wound up mired in sentimentality and pretension, the singer and his collaborators have created something that is as accomplished as it is moving.”

The program will be sung by the Lyric Opera Resident Artists accompanied by the Fry Street Quartet within a special scenic environment created for this concert.

Fenlon Lamb, Director of Opera at UMKC Conservatory of Music and Dance, will direct the performance, with scenery by Jeff Ridenour, lighting from Nate Wheatley and costumes by Mary Traylor.

Tickets are $35, $30 for Lyric Opera Subscribers. Ticket holders can enjoy a complimentary reception following the performance. In-event hospitality provided by Young Friends of the Lyric.

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Explorations Series underwritten by Muriel McBrien Kauffman Foundation, Spencer Fane LLP, Thomas and Sally Wood Family Foundation and Jim Zakoura.

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