Catapult Opera’s kick-off production will be a momentous, new theatrical treatment by Robert Wilson of Amahl and the Night Visitors, premiering at Peak Performances at Montclair State University in September 2020. Amahl and the Night Visitors, by Gian Carlo Menotti, was commissioned by NBC Opera Theater in 1951 as the first television opera in America and is the most-produced opera in the English language. With its Christmastide setting and transcendent themes of generosity and forgiveness, Amahl has earned its place in the pantheon of great operas and is now ripe for reexamination.
Robert Wilson is America’s legendary auteur stage director, who revolutionized theatrical presentation with his groundbreaking Einstein on the Beach, created in collaboration with Philip Glass and Lucinda Childs. In the intervening decades, Wilson’s productions have been seen at every major theater and festival in the world. His stage direction, inspired by Japanese Noh theater, often ritualizes the material, rendering the play’s and opera’s protagonists as iconic figures. Our production of Amahl will be no exception.