Thursday, February 27, 2014

6 Questions: Peter Stopschinski


Peter Stopschinski is the composer of BUM PHILLIPS ALL-AMERICAN OPERA opening on March 12th at The Ellen Stewart Theatre. Peter took time out from rehearsals to answer La MaMa's 6 Questions. 

1. How did you become involved with BUM PHILLIPS ALL-AMERICAN OPERA
I've been making all kinds of crazy music theater with my good friend the esteemed writer Kirk Lynn. Luke Leonard, the director of Bum Phillips, saw Kirk and my musical with the Rude Mechs, "I've Never Been So Happy" and commissioned us to create this opera. 

2. Are you a football fan? 
I am a football fan and in fact grew up in the 70s in Houston, Texas during the Luv Ya Blue era. As a six-year-old I owned a tiny little Luv Ya Blue T-shirt. I also attended the University of Texas and was a season ticket holder. 

3. How is football like opera? 
Football and Opera are both essentially exhibitions of extreme physical prowess. Watching Earl Campbell rack up 200 rushing yards in a game is not unlike hearing Pavarotti singing nine high C's in Donizetti's La Fille Du Regiment. 

4. What should audience members expect from this show? 
Bum Phillips is a celebration of football and Opera and those special times in human existence where communities come together and feel connected. We are fully aware that trying to re-create a football game on stage with singing is a ridiculous endeavor. But to tell the story of a remarkable man's life on stage is can be poignant and insightful. You will laugh you will cry:) 

5. Who has inspired you? 
I have to say that I was most inspired in the creation of the score by actually meeting Bum Phillips himself. We had the wonderful experience of visiting Bum, his wife Debbie, and their family out at their ranch and Goliad, Texas. We shared lunch (sandwiches, chips and beans) and Bum told us stories about raising horses, retirement, and his amazing career in professional football. They were very generous and wonderful people. He had an entire wall of his trademark white cowboy hats! 

6. What does working at La MaMa mean to you? 
Ellen Stewart's huge body of work involving music and dance is so inspirational. I feel like the unusual subject for this opera and our work with the choreographer Charlotte Griffin fits right in to Ellen's wonderful legacy. La Mama has been very generous with their space and other resources to help bring this ambitious production together. We are so grateful!

La MaMa presents 
Monk Parrots' 


Bum Phillips 


All-American Opera 

Concept, Direction, Production Design by Luke Leonard
Libretto by Kirk Lynn
Music by Peter Stopschinski 

Commissioned and produced by Monk Parrots (New York) 

March 12 – March 30, 2014 

Thursdays – Fridays – Saturdays @ 7:30pm
Sundays @  2:30pm  

Tickets: $25 Adults; $20 Students/Seniors; 
a limited number of $10 tickets are available IN ADVANCE as part of La MaMa's 10 @ $10 ticketing initiative. But hurry, these tickets are only available in advance and the sell quickly!

A special benefit performance on Thursday, March 20!

For Tickets and Info: Click Here