- Share this article on Facebook
- Share this article on Twitter
- Share this article on Email
- Show additional share options
- Share this article on Print
- Share this article on Comment
- Share this article on Whatsapp
- Share this article on Linkedin
- Share this article on Reddit
- Share this article on Pinit
- Share this article on Tumblr
NEW YORK — The blazing comet of Anna Nicole Smith‘s short but flamboyant life will burn again next fall when the opera about the tragic celebrity makes its U.S. premiere.
First seen at London’s Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, in 2011, Anna Nicole will be presented by the Brooklyn Academy of Music and New York City Opera. The work was composed by Mark-Anthony Turnage, with a libretto by Richard Thomas. It will be directed by Richard Jones, who also staged the original production.
Following in the wake of Jerry Springer: The Opera, the production represented a push by one of the world’s most venerable opera houses to marry high and low culture, tapping into the public’s insatiable fascination with celebrity casualties.
It follows Smith’s path from Texas high school dropout to Playboy’s 1993 Playmate of the Year, Guess supermodel, wife of an oil magnate 62 years her senior, and reality television star, ending with her tragic death in 2007 at age 39 from a fatal drug combination.
Reviewing the Covent Garden premiere in The New York Times, Anthony Tommasini called it “a weirdly inspired work, an engrossing, outrageous, entertaining and, ultimately, deeply moving new opera.” He described Jones’ staging as “a dazzling, humorous yet humane production.”
The title role will be sung in New York by soprano Sarah Joy Miller, with the production running for seven performances, Sept. 17-28, at BAM’s Howard Gilman Opera House. Steven Sloane will conduct the 66-member New York City Opera orchestra.
Sign up for THR news straight to your inbox every day