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Pictured: Philip Glass. Photo by Fernando Aceves.
Chicago Opera Theater has announced the cast for the Chicago premiere of Phillip Glass’ THE PERFECT AMERICAN based on American novelist Peter Stephan Jungk’s 2001 novel, “Der König von Amerika.”
Directed by Kevin Newbury and conducted by COT’s Artistic Director Andreas Mitisek, the production features Justin Ryan as Walt Disney, Zeffin Quinn Hollis as Roy Disney, Scott Ramsay as Wilhelm Dantine, Suzan Hanson as Lillian Disney, Alexandra Martinez-Turano as Sharon Disney, Lara Ryan as Diane Disney, Jamie Chamberlin as Hazel George, Rana Ebrahimi as Lucy/Josh, Kira Dills-DeSurra as Nurse/Secretary, Kyle Knapp, as Andy Warhol/Doctor/Chuck and Jason Switzer as Abraham Lincoln/Undertaker. The production will also feature the Apollo Chorus
The creative team includes Kevin Newbury (stage direction), Rudolph Wurlitzer (libretto), Zane Pihlstrom (set and costume design), David Jacques (lighting design), Sean Cawelti (video design).
THE PERFECT AMERICAN (from the press release):
THE PERFECT AMERICAN envisions the last three months of Walt Disney. Shuffling between the dreary present and memories of his upbringing, Glass fills in the spaces where the known facts end. As Disney is haunted by his own mortality and growing empire, Glass shows there is more to this icon than simply making dreams come true. With appearances by Abraham Lincoln, Andy Warhol and Disney’s family, this whirlwind opera is a poetic and tragic story of the American Dream.
“When I started out, people thought I was going to laugh at him,” Glass said recently in an interview with The Guardian. “But I see Walt Disney as an icon of modernity, a man able to build bridges between highbrow culture and popular culture; just like Leonard Bernstein, who could jump from a Broadway musical to a Mahler cycle.”
THE PERFECT AMERICAN runs April 22nd and 30th at The Harris Theater for Music and Dance. For more information visit chicagooperatheater.org.