Screening of ground-breaking, made-for-screen opera “Vireo” slated for July 17

Have dinner and meet the director of “Vireo: The Spiritual Biography of a Witch’s Accuser”

The Lincoln City Cultural Center is proud to present a screening of the ground-breaking “Vireo: The Spiritual Biography of a Witch’s Accuser”, an episodic made-for-the-screen opera composed by Lisa Bielawa on a libretto by Erik Ehn and directed by Charles Otte. This screening will also feature a discussion and Q & A with the composer, coming to Oregon just for this event, which will begin at 6 pm on Wednesday, July 17 at the LCCC, 540 NE Hwy. 101, Lincoln City. An optional Thai dinner can be ordered, with complimentary delivery at intermission.

Woman looks into a candle flame
Rowen Sabala stars in Vireo, a ground-breaking made-for-screen opera

Witchcraft … psychoanalysis … fantasy … for generations, visionary young girls have inspired fascination and fear. Enter the world of Vireo, a gifted teenage girl who finds herself slipping through time between centuries past and present. From award-winning composer Lisa Bielawa, visionary director Charlie Otte, and acclaimed librettist Erik Ehn, this ground-breaking episodic opera weaves a tale of witches, doctors, priests and one girl’s journey of self-discovery. The eponymous heroine Vireo, played by soprano Rowen Sabala, is a 14-year-old girl genius entangled in the historic obsession with female visionaries, as witch-hunters, early psychiatrists, and modern artists have defined them.

Filmed in 12 parts, Vireo’s story takes viewers to iconic locations across the country (including Alcatraz) and features performances by world-renowned musicians like the Kronos Quartet, violinist Jennifer Koh, soprano Deborah Voigt and many more.

The Lincoln City screening will begin at 6 pm, with a break at 8 pm. At intermission, there will be a complimentary delivery of dinner from M & P Thai in Lincoln City (Pad Prik Khing, Pa Kee Mow or Spicy Basil, with your choice of tofu, chicken or pork). Northwest beer and wine will be available for sale. Tickets are $25 for the screening and Q & A, and $35 to include dinner.

To learn more about the creative team and this innovative approach to operatic storytelling, head to www.operavireo.org. The Lincoln City Cultural Center offers performances, fine arts, classes, and visitor information inside the former Delake School at 540 NE Hwy. 101 in Lincoln City. For more information call 541-994-9994.

Promotional graphic for “Vireo: The Spiritual Biography of a Witch’s Accuser”
The Lincoln City Cultural Center will present a screening of the made-for-screen opera “Vireo: The Spiritual Biography of a Witch’s Accuser” on July 17, 2019.

More about VIREO

Vireo: The Spiritual Biography of a Witch’s Accuser is a made-for-TV-and-online opera, composed by Lisa Bielawa on a libretto by Erik Ehn and directed by Charles Otte.In May 2017, KCET released all twelve episodes of Vireo at once for free, on-demand streaming, which was a first for the network. Vireo made its world broadcast television premiere June 2017 on both KCET in Southern California and Link TV nationwide, with additional screenings across the country.

In 2019, Orange Mountain Music, the record label of Philip Glass, will release Vireo as a DVD/CD box set. In March 2020, a workshop production of VIREO LIVE – a groundbreaking hybrid film-opera experience – will be performed at The New School’s Philip Glass Institute in New York City.

Vireo is an Artist Residency Project of Grand Central Art Center in Santa Ana, a unit of Cal State Fullerton’s College of the Arts shepherded by Director and Chief Curator John Spiak. The unique multimedia initiative includes online articles and videos showcasing various facets of the production. Vireo is the winner of the 2015 ASCAP Foundation Deems Taylor/Virgil Thomson Multimedia Award and was awarded a prestigious MAP Fund Grant for 2016 through Grand Central Art Center. Bielawa and Otte recently received nominations for the 2018 Los Angeles Area Emmy Awards for their work on the project.

Screening of ground-breaking, made-for-screen opera "Vireo" slated for July 17 1
Rowen Sabala stars in Vireo, a ground-breaking made-for-screen opera

The eponymous heroine Vireo, played by soprano Rowen Sabala, is a 14-year-old girl genius entangled in the historic obsession with female visionaries, as witch-hunters, early psychiatrists, and modern artists have defined them. Based on Bielawa’s own research at Yale, then freely adapted and re-imagined by librettist Ehn, Vireo is a composite history of the way in which teenage-girl visionaries’ writings and rantings have been manipulated, incorporated and interpreted by the communities of men surrounding them throughout history. From the European Dark Ages, to Salem, Massachusetts, all the way to 19th century France and contemporary performance art, Vireo provides a thoughtful, sometimes-humorous look at the universal issues of gender identity, perception, and reality.

Vireo features the work of over 350 musicians including opera star Deborah Voigt, violinist Jennifer Koh, cellist Joshua Roman, mezzo-sopranos Laurie Rubin, Maria Lazarova and Kirsten Sollek, baritone Gregory Purnhagen, tenor Ryan Glover, drummer Matthias Bossi, soprano Emma MacKenzie and in the title role of Vireo, teenage soprano Rowen Sabala.

Additionally, the opera features the talents of notable groups and organizations from around the country including Kronos Quartet, the San Francisco Girls Chorus, Magik*Magik Orchestra, American Contemporary Music Ensemble, Alarm Will Sound, PARTCH, the Orange County School of the Arts Middle School Choir, and many more.