Europeras 1 & 2

November 6, 10 and 11, 2018 Sony Studios

LA Phil New Music Group
The Industry
Yuval Sharon, director
John Lacovelli, scenic designer
Marc Lowenstein, music advisor
Chris Kuhl, lighting designer
Jody Elff, sound designer
Alexander Gedeon, associate director

“For two hundred years the Europeans have been sending us their operas. Now I’m sending them back.” That’s how John Cage described Europeras 1 & 2, and he wasn’t kidding.

The L.A.-born master’s 1987 opera – his first – uses fragments of arias and duets from 64 European operas as its source material. Performers sing fragments of between one and sixteen measures, sometimes solo and sometimes simultaneously. They compete for attention with a pre-taped mix of 101 layered fragments from other operas. And the whole thing is dictated by chance – a computer program meant to stimulate the I Ching’s coin oracle. The end effect is a moving portrait not only of operatic history, but of the passage of time itself, and Sharon’s production, a collaboration between The Industry and the LA Phil gave it a further Hollywood twist, taking over a soundstage at Sony Studios in Culver City on November 6, 10, and 11 2018.


  • LA Phil New Music Group
  • The Industry
  • Director Yuval Sharon
  • Scenic designer John Iacovelli
  • Music advisor Marc Lowenstein
  • Lighting designer Christopher Kuhl
  • Costume designer Emma Kingsbury
  • Sound designer Jody Elff
  • Associate director Alexander Gedeon

Europeras 1

  • Soprano Maria Elena Altany
  • Soprano Justine Aronson
  • Soprano Julianna Di Giacomo
  • Soprano Sara Hershkowitz
  • Mezzo-soprano Suzanna Guzmán
  • Mezzo-soprano Joanna Lynn-Jacobs
  • Tenor Jon Lee Keenan
  • Tenor James Onstad
  • Baritone David Williams
  • Bass-baritone Cedric Berry

Europeras 2

  • Soprano Laurel Irene
  • Mezzo-soprano Sarah Beaty
  • Mezzo-soprano Renée Rapier
  • Tenor Ashley Faatoalia
  • Tenor John Matthew Myers
  • Baritone Babatunde Akinboboye
  • Baritone David Castillo
  • Bass James Hayden
  • Bass Colin Ramsey


  • Richard Biglia
  • Liz Bustle
  • Raymond Ejiofor
  • Daeun Jung
  • Eden Orrick
  • Andrew Pearson


What I found resonated on election eve remarkably well was the concentration of each performer focusing on what matters no matter what the noise. That alone proved not just exhilarating but downright mood-altering.

A rare and extraordinary staging by Yuval Sharon and his experimental company, The Industry.

A spirit of joyous absurdity reigned, yet the show had a poignant undertow. Attempting to sing one’s song above the din is a general condition these days.