Paradise Interrupted - Spoleto

Interactive system design, live generated images for the Opera
Spoleto May 2015
Paradise Interrupted - Spoleto
4 forces of nature - Paradise Interrupted - Spoletto

This opera blends Western and Chinese traditions in a poetic story that evokes both the stories of the Garden of Eden and the Peony Pavillion. The Opera, composed by Huang Ruo, directed and designed by Jennifer Wen Ma and with librettos by Ji Chao, follows a woman whose voice activates a world where her search for an unattainable ideal takes place.

Paradise Interrupted - Spoleto

Cokuyo is a software application I developed for this project which captures the soprano's voice and analyzes it for vocal and emotional content. This analysis is then used to create and animate light particles which interact with the singers on stage. Not only are the images created by her voice but the way the move, the choices they make, how they move. They are emotionally tied to the soprano's emotions. These images are then passed on to Austin Switser who uses them to create the final images and animations that are projected onto the stage.

Paradise Interrupted - Spoleto

Paradise Interrupted generated quite a bit of press. Following are some clippings

Select Press:

Cavalli, Lauren "Guillermo Acevedo and His Voice Responsive Projections in Paradise Interrupted," Post and Courier, June 17, 2015.

Felder, Lynn "Humor, Drama Abound on Opening Day of Spoleto Festival," Winston-Salem Journal, May 22, 2015.

Jiang, Jiamin "Sidebar: What's The Peony Pavilion?," Post and Courier, May 21, 2015.

Jiang, Jiamin "China rising: Music of Chinese Composers Increasingly Heard in U.S.," Post and Courier, May 25, 2015.

Jiang, Jiamin "Q&A with Qian Yi, Singer in Paradise Interrupted," Post and Courier, May 26, 2015.

Jiang, Jiamin "Critic's Notebook: Echoes of Chinese Homeland," Post and Courier, June 03, 2015.

Kirst, Seamus "Countertenor John Holiday Steals the Festival," Post and Courier, May 30, 2015.

Pandolfi, Elizabeth "Paradise Interrupted brings East and West together in a mythical operatic garden," Charleston City Paper, May 20, 2015.

Parker, Adam "Classical Music Offerings the Core of Spoleto Festival," Post and Courier, May 21, 2015.

Parker, Adam "Review: Paradise Interrupted A Visual and Aural Display," Post and Courier, May 23, 2015.

Piontek, Natalie "The Music of Paradise Interrupted," Post and Courier, May 21, 2015.
Rong, Xiaoqing "Paradisiacal Visions Mix Two Worlds into One," Global Times, May 28, 2015.

Sing Tao Daily, May 25, 2015.

Waleson, Heidi "'Paradise Interrupted' and 'Veremonda, l'amazzone di Aragona' Reviews," Wall Street Journal, May 27, 2015.

Waleson, Heidi "Wieder Auf Entdeckungskurs," Opernwelt, July, 2015.


Jennifer Wen Ma, director and visual designer
Huang Ruo, composer
Qian Yi, lead role, Kunqu performer
Joe Dennis, tenor
John Holiday, countertenor
Ao Li, bass barritone
Joo Won Kang, baritone
Ji Chao, librettist
Agnes Tang, libretto translator
John Kennedy, conductor
Kara Riopelle, assistant director
Matthew J. Hilyard, stage designer
Lea Xiao, lighting designer
Guillermo Acevedo, interactive video designer
Austin Switser, projection designer
Melissa Kirgan, costume designer
Xing-Zhen Chung Hilyard, costume designer
Keuna Lee, pianist
Aik Khai Pung, assistant conductor
John Chen, supernumerary
Sabrina Sng, supernumerary
Sarah Stanley, supernumerary
Walter Imko, supernumerary

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