OperaFix: Juana at dell’Arte Opera Ensemble

August 21-27 dell’Arte Opera Ensemble is presenting the professional premiere of Carla Lucero’s opera Juana at The Rose Nagelberg Theater In New York. We’ve followed this project over the years, and in honor of this premiere, we’re collecting clips from our shows beginning with when the project won OPERA America Opera Discovery Grants for Female Composers in 2019. That year we played music jukebox with the team and commented on what we heard. This was recorded as an audio only podcast in some rough conditions, so please pardon our audio quality. Following that Gregory Moomgjy talks with us on Zoom about how the piece was being worked on at dell’Arte during the hight of the pandemic. And Chuck did an audio interview with Chris Fecteau and Marianna Mott-Newirth.  

We interviewed Carla and her collaborator  Dr. Rita E. Urquijo-Ruiz about their LA Opera production of The Three Women of Jerusalem on episode 87, they were amazing generous guests, so we encourage you to watch that fascinating interview.

Composer Carla Lucero has set the Spanish-language libretto by Gaspar de Alba and Lucero with evocative colors and a moving narrative voice. The opera tells the story of Sor Juana Ines de la Cruz, a 17th century feminist genius whose life was marked by repeated conflict with men of the Inquisition, despite the friendship and protection of two successive Spanish vicereines and the fame brought by her own published writings.  She was an accomplished theologian, poet author, composer, artist and architect, and favorite of the Spanish colonial court, yet her fame and brilliance eventually led to her suppression.

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