'Marvelous Order' creators to discuss their multimedia opera Feb. 10

February 03, 2021

UNIVERSITY PARK — Director and animator Joshua Frankel and composer Judd Greenstein will make a virtual visit to Penn State's Center for the Performing Arts to discuss their multimedia work-in-progress with “New Opera as Art and Social Discourse," at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 10.

In fall 2019, the creative team for “A Marvelous Order” brought their modern opera to Eisenhower Auditorium for a weeklong developmental residency. The free event will feature a video highlighting their artistic journey and discussion of the opera.

The event will be broadcast live via Zoom and questions will be taken through the chat function. A recording of the conversation will be available to stream from 7:30 p.m. Friday, Feb. 12, to 7:30 p.m. Friday, Feb. 19.

Visit Center for the Performing Arts online for more information.

“A Marvelous Order” tells a tale of opposing sides of a New York City community — the desire to develop and expand pitted against the need to maintain character and intimacy. It is based on the real-life public battle between author and urban studies activist Jane Jacobs and “mid-20th-century master builder” Robert Moses. It features a libretto by former U.S. Poet Laureate Tracy K. Smith.

“This is a story that is important to anyone who lives in or near buildings,” Frankel said in a Center for the Performing Arts interview. “Anywhere things get built, there are disagreements about what is to be built and where and when and why.”

A performance of the opera will be scheduled for Eisenhower when in-person presentations become feasible.

In conjunction with “A Marvelous Order,” Woskob Family Gallery at the Penn State Downtown Theatre is hosting an exhibit of Frankel’s opera animations that can be viewed from 6 p.m. to 1 a.m. daily through the windows of the facility at 146 S. Allen St., in State College. The exhibit is scheduled to last until mid-March.

Contributions from the members of the Center for the Performing Arts and a grant from the University Park Student Fee Board help make the program free of charge.

The program is part of the Center for the Performing Arts 2020–21 “Up Close and Virtual” season. It’s also a part of “The Reflection Project,” funded by The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. Geisinger and Northwest provide support for virtual presentations by the Center for the Performing Arts.

Visit “Up Close and Virtual” for more information about forthcoming events.

Find the Center for the Performing Arts on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

  • A man sits on a couch with his hands folded and resting on his knees.

    “A Marvelous Order” composer Judd Greenstein, along with animator-director Joshua Frankel, will virtually discuss the progress made on their modern-day multimedia production.

    IMAGE: Anja Schutz
  • A man is shown from the shoulders up.

    Joshua Frankel, director and animator for the multimedia opera “A Marvelous Order,” said his production about urban development in 1960s New York City is just as relevant to small towns. “This is a story that is important to anyone who lives in or near buildings,” he said. “Anywhere things get built, there are disagreements about what is to be built and where and when and why.”

    Read more ›
    IMAGE: Photo provided
  • A small group of people stand rigidly in place while another group walks offstage.

    The production of “A Marvelous Order” will be the topic of discussion among the Center for the Performing Arts and director-animator Joshua Frankel and composer Judd Greenstein with “New Opera as Art and Social Discourse.” The free event at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 10, will feature a video highlighting their artistic journey. 

    Read more ›
    IMAGE: Roman Iwasiwka
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(Media Contacts)

Last Updated February 03, 2021