Both Eyes Open : Opera
“Both Eyes Open,” a multidisciplinary chamber opera by Max Giteck Duykers and Philip Kan Gotanda, will be presented at 7 p.m. Tuesday, September 13 at Winchester Cultural Center, 3130 S. McLeod Drive, just north of Desert Inn Road. Tickets are $10 in advance and $12 on day of the show and can be purchased at Winchester's front desk or online at
The opera, produced in cooperation with the UNLV College of Fine Arts School of Music, combines physical theater, interactive audio and video, contemporary music, singing, extended vocal techniques, chanting, spoken word, and modern dance to explore the Japanese internment during WWII and its aftermath. Max Duykers' score, a blend of atonal and tonal sounds emphasizing unique timbres, will meld sampled acoustic sounds with live acoustic instruments to effect the feeling of a hyper-real scene. Director Melissa Weaver will make inventive and efficient use of visual design and portable lighting to instantly transform the performance environment. The opera is the first in a series of concerts arranged by Nevada Encounters of New Music (N.E.O.N.).
The libretto, by Philip Kan Gotanda, is based on a true story. In the opera a California truck farmer, Jinzo Matsumoto, loses his wife and child while the family is interned in Arkansas. The opera focuses on his return to California and his rescue from despair and suicide by a Zen Buddhist Daruma doll. “Both Eyes Open” stars tenor John Duykers, soprano Kalean Ung, and baritone Kelvin Chan. Music is by the Nextet Ensemble, conducted by Virko Baley and featuring Joel Davel on marimba lumina and Marja Mutru on piano.
The opera was developed through a series of workshops by First Look Sonoma, based in Sonoma County and San Francisco. The workshops began in 2011 at Sonoma State University under the title “Apricots of Andujar” and continued at Western Michigan University in spring, 2012; in summer, 2013; and at UNLV as “The Potato King” in spring, 2014.
The fully-developed opera is a compelling, emotional drama operating on many levels of consciousness and memory to reproduce the human experience.
Those interested in this concert can call the Winchester Cultural Center at (702) 455-7340
Winchester Cultural Center
3130 McLeod Dr, Las Vegas, 89121, NV, United States