The Velvet Oratorio

VO small 3X5b


Libretto by Edward Einhorn
Music/staging by Henry Akona

Sat Nov 8 at 8pm, Sun Nov 9 at 5pm*
Fri Dec 12 at 8pm Sat Dec 13 at 8pm
Tue Jan 13 at 8pm Wed Jan 14 at 8pm

*6:30 roundtable follows on Nov 9, the anniversary of the Berlin Wall.  Featuring Slovak composer Peter Breiner and German dramaturg Beate Heine Bennett.

Bohemian National Hall
321 East 73rd Street

Tickets $30 Click here or call 212-352-3101

Production Staff 
Costume Designer: Carla Gant 
Video Designer: Bryce Cutler
Lighting Designer: Jeff Nash
Music Director: Maria Dessena
Assistant Director: Candice Dickinson
Concert Master: Michael Midlarsky
Wardrobe: Cristina Madero
Box Office: Patrice Miller
Intern: Sean Daley

With: Craig Anderson, Ross DeGraw, Andrea Gallo, John Gallop, Jonathan Kline, Jillian Kuhl, Mike Maloney, Jenny Lee Mitchell, Mick O’Brien, Eric Oleson, Yvonne Roen, Anna Marie Sell, Emily Shankman, Phoebe Silva, Moira Stone, Terence Stone, Tony Torn, Matthew Trumbull, Michael Villastrigo

Musicians: Oliver Fetter (Drums), Jennifer Harder (Trumpet), Marina Kifferstein (Violin), Naday Meykson (Violin), Michael Midlarsky (Cello), Nick Revel (Viola), Rebecca Steinberg (Trumpet)

Graphic art by Clinton Corbett

The Velvet Oratorio, an original opera/theater piece commemorating the 25th anniversary of The Velvet Revolution in Czechoslovakia, will be presented in the grand ballroom at the current home of the Czech Center and the Czech Consulate: The Bohemian National Hall. The Velvet Oratorio mixes history, opera, and farce in its evocative retelling of the Velvet Revolution, as seen through the eyes of Václav Havel's signature character, Ferdinand Vaněk.

The piece is organized as a series of alternating scenes and choruses, the chorus representing the crowds in Prague during the events spanning November 17 1989 to January 1, 1990. The text for the oratorio is based partly upon recently released U.S. State Department documents and corresponding Czechoslovakian / Soviet documents and interviews with journalists, diplomats, and ordinary people who were in the streets of Prague during the revolution.

The Velvet Oratorio was original staged as a concert for New York Public Library for the Performing Arts’ festival, Performing Revolution in Central and Eastern Europe  This will be a full staging of the piece.

The original concert version was staged

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Bruno Walter Auditorium 
Dorothy and Lewis B. Cullman Center
The New York Public Library for the Performing Arts
(at Lincoln Center)

Monday, November 30, 2009

Bohemian National Hall
321 East 73rd Street

Production Staff

Libretto: Edward Einhorn Music/Staging: Henry Akona Dramaturgy: Karen Ott 
Musical Director: James Kennerley Video Designer: Jared Mezzochi Costume Designer: Carla Gant 
Lighting Designer (BNH): Jeff Nash
Assistant Director: Tom Berger
Stage Manager: Marissa Bea
Concert Master: Michael Midlarsky

Craig Anderson, Timothy Babcock, Danny Bowes, Peter Brown, Jonathan Farmer, Andrea Gallo, Joe Gately, Josh Hartung, Uma Incrocci, Eric Oleson, Yvonne Roen, Tony Tor