The Vancouver Opera has announced a new composer for its latest commissioned opera, Stickboy.
Neil Weisensel will create the music for this innovative work, based on the bullying experiences of spoken word poet Shane Koyczan. The previously-announced composer, Jordan Nobles has had to withdraw for personal reasons.
Weisensel is one of the most frequently-performed and prolific Canadian opera composers. His six operas (Gisela in her Bathtub, City Workers in Love, The Bachelor Farmers of the Apocalypse, Merry Christmas Stephen Leacock, The Master’s Stroke, and Secret Service) have received 115 performances across the country. He has also composed and arranged music for feature films, stage works, documentaries, and animation.
Stickboy will have its world premiere in October and November 2014 at the Vancouver Playhouse. It will be part of Vancouver Opera's 2014-2015 subscription season.
Aimed at audiences of all ages, and drawing upon Koyczan's own experiences with bullying, both as a victim and as a perpetrator, the 80-minute opera will be based on Stickboy, Koyczan's acclaimed 2008 novel in verse.