Words First: Talking Text in Opera

Cerise Jacobs, Lillian Groag, and the Importance of the Story

February 22, 2021 Keturah Stickann/Lillian Groag/Cerise Jacobs Season 2 Episode 8
Words First: Talking Text in Opera
Cerise Jacobs, Lillian Groag, and the Importance of the Story
Show Notes Chapter Markers

Keturah speaks with librettist and producer, Cerise Jacobs, and director and playwright, Lillian Groag.  As Keturah says, “On the surface, these women couldn’t be more different, both in the type of work they make, and in their approach to putting work on stage.  What made me think of them as a perfect pairing for this episode is in the way they convey their thoughts, the strength of their conviction, and the absolute tenacity with which they hold and express their opinions.”

First up is Lillian Groag, who, with Keturah, analyzes oft-missed and mistaken moments in various operas, including Le Nozze di Figaro, Tosca, Il Trovatore, Aida, Don Giovanni, and Cosi fan Tutte.  Lillian is a champion of directing “On the word,” and her knowledge of these great libretti shine through in this conversation.

Find a bio of Lillian Groag here: https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lillian_Garrett-Groag
She talks more about Tosca here: https://youtu.be/wQkip1y43ok
She talks more about Aida here: https://youtu.be/b3iaAup_uMQ
And here’s an interview about her Don Giovanni: https://youtu.be/wz5RurCIxa8

Next is Cerise Jacobs, who speaks of her most recent upcoming work with her production company, White Snake Projects.  We discuss Alice in the Pandemic, I am A Dreamer Who No Longer Dreams, and Death by Life, among others.  Cerise also talks extensively about her philosophy as a librettist, and her work as a producer.

Find more information about Cerise Jacobs and White Snake Projects here: https://www.whitesnakeprojects.org/

Lillian Groag Interview
Cerise Jacobs Interview