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Proving Up
PREMIERE1/19/2018
COMPOSERMissy Mazzoli   
LIBRETTISTRoyce Vavrek   
 
Synopsis
Proving Up is an opera about the American Dream, told through the story of Nebraskan homesteaders in the 1870s. A family dreams of "proving up" and obtaining the deed to the land they've settled. They obsessively list the requirements of the Homestead Act: five years of harvest, a sod house dwelling, and perhaps the most elusive element — a glass window. With their eldest son incapacitated, Ma and Pa Zegner send their youngest living child Miles on a mission to share the valuable commodity with their distant neighbors who are expecting a visit from a government inspector. Miles mounts his gray mare with the window wrapped in burlap and gallops across the land. The elements, natural and otherwise, have other plans, and Miles comes face to face with a strange man who turns out to be the ghost of a neighboring farmer, driven mad by the requirements of "proving up." The willowy figure knows all too well the cost of the American Dream, and the window soon becomes a broken mirror reflecting great tragedy.
MOST PRODUCED SINCE 2000
RANKTITLEPRODUCTIONS
600Proving Up1
600120 Songs for the Marquis de Sade1
6004:48 Psychosis1
600A Blizzard On Marblehead Neck1
600A Cask of Amontillado1
600A Chorus Line1
This work ranks as the #281 most produced North American title since 2000.
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