December 11, 1998 | OperaDelaware
Billie and Zelda
Composer:Tina Davidson
Librettist:Eva DavidsonLale Davidson
Billie and Zelda is both a theater piece and an opera which run concurrently. The work is about children lost through death, being heard and found, and the ability of telling the story to heal these wounds. Billie, the opera, is about Clara and her son, Billie, who is killed on D-Day. It is the story of a mother's crushing grief and her dead son's need to be released. The theater piece, Zelda, is about an exotic and headstrong child. One winter day, she pesters her mother so that she is sent outside to play where she sits stubbornly for hours. Severely chilled, she catches pnemonia and dies. She then haunts not only her own family, but the generations to come.

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Title Information

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Approximate Runtime (hh:mm)

Number of Acts

Musical Style
Billie is an opera, Zelda is music-theater

Vocal & Musical Forces
For Billie: Singers: 2 sopranos, alto, tenor, baritone, male quartet. For Zelda: 1 actress, 1 narrator. Orchestra for both works: string quartet and percussionist

Original Cast
Martha Slater (Zelda); Scott Murphree (Billie); Sara Jane Duffy (the present Clara); Robin Leigh Lassie (the past Clara); Patrick Evans (Billy's father); Derek Goodman, Michael Laroche and Jason Scott (Soldiers). For Billie: Elixir String Quartet; Harvey Price, percussionist. For Zelda: Martha Slater, narrator; Mary Wooten, cellist

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