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"The Falling and the Rising" features Chorus of Former Soldiers

by Seattle Opera
October 2019, Volume 69, Issue 9

The Falling and the Rising was first conceived of by Staff Sergeant Benjamin Hilgert of the U.S. Army Field Band and Soldiers' Chorus, which then commissioned librettist Jerre Dye and composer Zach Redler to help create the opera. When Seattle Opera presents the piece in November, the company will offer something unique in the composition’s history: a chorus made up of veterans recovering from homelessness and other trauma. The chorus singers are participants in a local nonprofit program, Path with Art. 

This opera tells the story of a comatose soldier’s inner journey after she has suffered a roadside attack. As her consciousness traverses a coma-induced dreamscape, the audience serves as both companion and witness to her journey. Along the way, we share encounters with fellow service members, each one on the brink of a discovery of their own. Together, they seek clarity and communal hope through their shared resilience in facing a murky and everchanging reality.

Returning Seattle Opera artists include Tess Altiveros (Soldier) and Jorell Williams. Making principal debuts are two singers who have previously performed with the Seattle Opera Chorus: Elizabeth Galafa (Toledo) and Tim Janecke (Jumper). 

In addition to Path with Art, Seattle Opera will be partnering with several community and service organizations to better shed light on the experiences of U.S. service members. Following every performance of The Falling and the Rising, the audience is invited to stay for a post-show conversation spotlighting organizations that work to improve the lives of local veterans.


Nov. 15, 17, 20, 22, & 24, 2019

The Opera Center: 363 Mercer St.


Note: Seattle Opera will also be offering transportation/parking stipends to groups of 8 or more along with an extra complimentary ticket.