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Shawn, Allen

The Ant and the Grasshopper (1999)

Duration: 30 minutes
A one-act childrens' opera

Libretto by Penny Orloff, based on Aesop's fable (E)

Scoring
S,A,Bar 1.1.0.0-1.0.0.0-perc:glsp/marimba/xyl/tgl/susp.cym/wdbl/SD/BD-strings(1.1.1.1.1).
Abbreviations (PDF).


Territory
This work is available from Boosey & Hawkes for the world.



World Premiere
11/27/1999
Meydenbauer Center Theater, Bellevue, Seattle
Penny Orloff, director
Conductor: Charles Long
Company: Chaspen Opera Theater Company

Roles

THE ANTLyric Soprano
THE GRASSHOPPERLyric Baritone (tall)
HAPPY MEDIUMMezzo Soprano
Bugs etcchorus (S,A,Bar)
Jitterbugs etcdancers


Time and Place
The forest floor at the end of summer


Synopsis
At the end of summer the inhabitants of the forest floor prepare for the winter to come except for the Grasshopper who plays his violin instead. His happy tune makes the bugs dance. An Ant warns him that time is short and if he doesn't start preparing for winter, he’ll be sorry. As the weather chills, the bugs head south and the Ant scurries to her burrow underground. The Grasshopper is, as warned, unprepared and as the winter storm rages around him, he succumbs to hunger and cold. Hearing a noise, the Ant peers over her tree stump, spies the Grasshopper, carries him back into her house, and settles him into a chair by the fireplace. The Grasshopper is very weak and believes he is dying when the Ant sings his summer song to him restoring his energy to pick up the violin. As the winter continues to roar outside, the Grasshopper plays his songs deep into the night in front of the fire in the company of the Ant.


Moods
Comic


Subjects
Ethics, Mythology





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