American Lyric Theater Founder Lawrence Edelson Interviewed
Lawrence Edelson talks with composer Jeremy Howard Beck (Photo: Steven Meyer)
"I asked ALT founder Lawrence Edelson (who was an apprentice with Boston Ballet before going on to work with Ballet West and Ballet Met Columbus) about the differences between the creation of new works Opera as opposed in Dance. 'Choreographers start as dancers, and dancers spend a lot of time focusing on technique. It's from that solid grounding in technique and exposure to different choreographers' work that new choreographers begin to blossom, pushing what is merely technical, to develop their own vocabulary and their own voice. But it starts with technique. Opera composers and librettists need the opportunity to build skills directly related to Opera that they might not get in a University or Conservatory setting.' Since 2005 when he founded ALT, Edelson has created an organization that focuses on identifying gifted emerging operatic writers, providing those writers with unprecedented professional mentorship, commissioning their first major operatic works, and helping place those operas with producing companies across the country. 'There is no clear path to becoming a writer for the opera stage. Aspiring librettists usually come from playwriting or poetry backgrounds, often with wonderful ideas, but a significant lack of experience and exposure in Opera.' The first year of the program, students are focused on the skills and process of creation -- not the end product. They receive over 60 classes and workshops, totaling over 200 hours over a 10 month period. There are group sessions as well as private mentorships." [Source] Learn more about ALT by clicking here.