The Juniper Tree
An opera in two acts for chamber orchestra, small chorus and soloists (1984) 90'
Music by Philip Glass and Robert Moran.
Libretto by Arthur Yorinks based on a tale by the Brothers Grimm.
4S, Mz, T, 2Bar, B; children's voices, mixed chorus; 1(pic).0.1(cl).1/184.108.40.206/2 perc (timp, SD, BD, vib, chimes, wdbl, tamb, tam-t, car-coil)/hp/2kbd (syn, cel)/ str (220.127.116.11.1) fl, bn, tpt, hn, trmb, 2 vln, vla, vc, celeste, pic, hp, db.
Comissioned by the American Repertory Theater, Cambridge, MA
December 11, 1985 at the American Repertory Theater, Cambridge MA
Glass and fellow composer Robert Moran collaborated in virtually equal measure on the composition of The Juniper Tree. A Glass scene is followed by a Moran scene, with transitions composed by each. The result is a fascinating hybrid, each composer holding on to his own identity while melding with the other.
The famous Grimm fairy tale tells of a Wicked Stepmother who murders her stepson and serves him up in a stew to his unsuspecting father. The boy's sister buries her brother's bones under a Juniper Tree, and the child's spirit returns as a singing bird who wreaks vengeance on the evil Stepmother before being restored to life in the bosom of his family. One of the most tuneful operas in the Glass repertory.
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