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'Tender Land' from In Series

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Copland, The Tender Land, University of Kentucky Opera Theater, K. Trevor
(Albany Records, 2002)
Charles T. Downey, ‘Tender Land,’ the failed Copland opera, shows its worth at Gala Theatre (Washington Post, October 19)
Aaron Copland’s music is so familiar, so iconic in the way it stands for American identity, that we take it for granted. The composer’s embrace of pioneer stories from America’s early history, at a time when the United States was becoming the dominant world superpower, can feel like kitsch now.

A production of his failed opera “The Tender Land” by the In Series, heard Saturday evening at Gala Hispanic Theatre, was an opportunity to appreciate that Copland’s music is more radical than its reputation might seem. Although the libretto, by Copland’s one-time lover Erik Johns, grinds to a dramatic halt trying to reach its conclusion, the music is often of exceptional beauty.

Copland created the work, beginning in 1952, for the NBC Television Opera Workshop, a program that in today’s pop-culture-saturated world seems too improbable to have existed... [Continue reading]
Copland, The Tender Land
In Series
GALA Hispanic Theater

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