The Fly (opera)

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The Fly is an opera in two acts by Canadian composer Howard Shore, with a libretto by David Henry Hwang. It was commissioned by the Théâtre du Châtelet in Paris, France, where it premiered on 2 July 2008, and by Edgar Baitzel, then director of the Los Angeles Opera, where the opera was first performed on 7 September 2008. The work was broadcast by Radio France's station France Musique on 2 August 2008.[1]

The opera is loosely based on David Cronenberg's 1986 film The Fly, which was based on the short story of the same name by George Langelaan. Shore also wrote the musically unrelated score of that film.[2]


Role Voice type Premiere cast,[3][4] 2 July 2008
Conductor: Plácido Domingo
Seth Brundle (The Fly), scientist bass-baritone Daniel Okulitch
Veronica Quaife, journalist mezzo-soprano Ruxandra Donose
Stathis Borans, editor tenor David Curry in Paris[5]
Gary Lehman in Los Angeles[6]
Officer/Medical Analyst/Cheevers mezzo-soprano Beth Clayton
Marky tenor Jay Hunter Morris
Scientist #1 mezzo-soprano Sophie van de Woestyne in Paris
Silvia Vasquez in Los Angeles
Scientist #2 baritone Jean-Gabriel Saint-Martin in Paris
Nicholas Hartley in Los Angeles
Scientist #3 mezzo-soprano Louise Callinan in Paris
Anna Jablonski in Los Angeles
Scientist #4 baritone Frederic Goncalves in Paris
Matthew Moore in Los Angeles
Scientist #5 baritone Luc Lalonde in Paris
Andrew Wilkowske in Los Angeles
Director David Cronenberg
Set designer Dante Ferretti
Costume designer Denise Cronenberg
Lighting designer A.J. Weissbard
Associate conductor/Chorus master Grant Gershon
Makeup and creature design Stephan L. Dupuis
Makeup, creature and puppet fabrication Mark A. Rappaport's Creature Effects, Inc.

The opera runs approximately two hours.


  1. ^ Héro, Florian (30 June 2008). "Histoire d'une oeuvre: Howard Shore: The Fly" (in French). Radio France. Retrieved 21 August 2008.[permanent dead link]
  2. ^ Tommasini, Anthony (8 September 2008). "The Song of the Brundlefly". The New York Times. Retrieved 8 September 2008.
  3. ^ "Howard Shore: The Fly – The Opera: The Creative Team". Los Angeles Opera. 2008. Archived from the original on 2008-06-02. Retrieved 4 June 2008.
  4. ^ "Howard Shore: The Fly – The Opera: The Cast". Los Angeles Opera. 2008. Archived from the original on 2 June 2008. Retrieved 4 June 2008.
  5. ^ Riding, Alan (5 July 2008). "Trying to Teach 'The Fly' to Soar Operatically". The New York Times. Retrieved 9 July 2008.
  6. ^ "LA Opera – The Fly (playbill)". Los Angeles Opera. Archived from the original on 11 May 2008. Retrieved 10 September 2008.

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