Award-Winning Writing Duo Gives Voice to Kiki di Montparnasse, Iconic 1920s Model and Muse
Young Artists of Cantanti Project Bring Oldest Surviving Opera EURIDICE to Life in NYC
From the earliest surviving opera, to a world premiere, from recitals to dance parties, this will be our most ambitious season yet. We look forward to working with friends old and new to make it all happen.
"the fearless and endlessly creative Cantanti Project underwent the project of restoring Caccini's work to vibrant life"
"a heart-wrenching, self-reflecting performance of a striking composition... an extraordinary experience"
"Caccini's EURIDICE may be four centuries old, but tonight is seemed fresh and new."
"The thoughtfulness of each singer was evident, not only in their choice of repertoire and their performance, but also in their eloquent essays..."
"laced with subtle comedic moments and tasty dramatic turns"
"one of those rare moments in theater where brilliant music and great directing worked together to create sublime operatic magic"
"Nothing gladdens our heart more than seeing a "Sold Out" sign at the opera. No, opera is not dying in NYC, but it is taking new forms."
With small opera companies dwindling in New York City because of lack of funding, it is unusual to see a small company spring up, survive, and grow. The Cantanti Project has defied these odds and recently presented a fully staged production of Handel’s Alcina on February 28, 2016.
“Throughout my journey of life, music has sustained me. I did not grow up in a musical family but it somehow found me. When I make music, I feel as though I am connecting to a deeper part of myself and to a higher purpose.”
“In this day and age, when politics and current events push us to view other people as different or less than ourselves, I believe that the simple power of music to move us is incredibly important.”
“Music is the deepest and most sincere way to connect with others (in my opinion). Music is able to communicate emotions, intentions, the deepest places of our souls in a way unlike any other, sometimes without us realizing it. We listen to music because we want to feel, because we want to be told a story, and because we want to share something with those around us that only music can facilitate. I've never found a better way to express myself outside of music.”
“Music has taken me all around the world and taught me languages I didn't know I would speak, as well as given me the voice and the courage to be who I am. Music gave me a space to be myself before I was able to come to terms with my queerness in the wider world.”
“I could tell my whole life story through music. From bringing memories to life through performing or being transported back to a specific memory through listening, music is the continuous thread that weaves all of the memories together.”
“My strongest memories of music are in the Philippines - family members singing karaoke at a children's birthday party, dragging a karaoke machine onto a beach wedding, singing in the middle of shopping malls. Because of this, for me singing especially is a fundamental human need. You don't need to be amazing at it - but our voices cry to be heard, and even if it's not around a campfire, we try to find ways to sing with others.”
“One of the things I love about working on new music, and stage works especially, is that they give us (both audiences and artists) the opportunity to explore fresh perspectives on who we are and how we relate to each other.”
“The unknown is always a little scary, but new work is so important to me, because the social construct is always changing, especially now. It is essential for us as artists to continue to hold up a mirror to the ways we behave, and reflect that in our stories we build.”
“I want people to see that young people can create exciting new works in a medium usually popularly perceived as stagnant.”
“I hope people come to see Tabula Rasa to learn about the mysterious life led by Kiki de Montparnasse, and give her a chance to finally have her story heard on a platform that was once seldom told... I want everyone to be talking about Kiki! “
“I think this work is unique because its so rich in exposition while still maintaining amazing melodies and music. Kiki and Man Ray’s story is so interesting — clumsy and passionate, we had so much there already. It was taking their hands out of history and giving them life that has been so rewarding. Every single performer you will see is so invested in their historical counterpart, deeply giving homage to their contributions in art and in their lives. This is what makes the work so special.”
“My character is Mrs. Prin, aka Wine Mom, Kiki's mother, as she exists in Kiki's mind. I love the relatable creepiness of this feeling that mom is always watching and judging, whether Kiki is out at a cafe or in Man's bedroom.”
“I hope people come to see Tabula Rasa to experience & support the direction new opera is going - catchy tunes, STRONG female characters (written and developed by females), a short run time (~80 min), kickass immersive set designs, melodies written with the voice in mind (can I hear an amen?), life lessons tastefully scattered throughout the show, relatable themes...and did I mention the tunes?”
“Tabula Rasa is all about discovering the value in the odd, the weird, and the underappreciated and I hope that, by watching the show, people can begin to see just how special and important the people and things we undervalue are.”
“Thérèse was a gym teacher near Deauville before she met Kiki. If I wasn't an artist, I'd be an athlete for sure and Deauville is the beach town where my family goes on vacation in France. There is also a photo of Kiki and Thérèse where I look just like her. Those sort of "coincidences" (are they though?) give me goosebumps and it makes it all the more special.”
“I found out that Man was often misunderstood. Man was a socially awkward and anxious guy and this led to many misinterpretations that are apparently still being made… I'm exhibit A.”