A Secular Oratorio
by Benjamin Yarmolinsky

“We the People” reunite for four more performances with the original cast Behind the Door, beginning on Constitution Day, September 17th. Come celebrate civil rights with VPR!

THE CONSTITUTION, A Secular Oratorio
by Benjamin Yarmolinsky

Tuesday, September 17th (Constitution Day), 2019, 8:00 PM
Tuesday, September 24th, 2019, 8:00 PM
Thursday, September 26th, 2019, 8:00 PM
Saturday, September 28th, 2019, 8:00 PM

Behind the Door
219 Court Street
Brooklyn, NY 11201


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‘The Constitution,’ ‘Figaro 90210!’ Headline Top 5 Operas to See This Weekend: “During these complex political times, it is especially unique to see a work that puts the Constitution front and center. This is an opportunity for audiences to familiarize themselves with a document that represents the soul of the U.S.” Operawire

“…one of the most unique and fascinating works in New York” Operawire

“The score’s great strength lay in Yarmolinksy’s (sic) remarkable ability to integrate the words of the Constitution into this smorgasbord of musical styles. Yarmolinksy (sic) found poetry even in the most periphrastic of the Constitution’s articles…

“The VPR chorus brought bucketloads of character to Yarmolinsky’s extended choral passages; the result was less a homogenous chorus, and more a rich tapestry of individual personalities coming together in a sharp, full-throated ensemble. Their performance had an infectious energy, which, under the baton of Peter Szep, was channeled into a nuanced and vibrant interpretation of the composer’s score.

“In a directorial coup, the doors to the theater, bordering onto the street, were left open throughout, so that the entire performance took place in full view of Brooklyn’s gawking flâneurs. At times, the performers spilled out onto the sidewalk, their gentle chorale mingling with the sounds of passing traffic and restaurant punters, as if hinting at the vast American nation beyond.”Parterre

“Benjamin Yarmolinsky’s choral work is literally a setting of the articles of the Constitution of the United States and the Bill of Rights, all the more important in today’s troubled age.” Superconductor

Conducted by Peter Szep
Directed by Judith Barnes and James Rutherford
Matthew Lobaugh, piano
Karni Dorell, scenic design
Sarah Krauss, assistant director
Christopher Denver, stage manager


Liz Lang, soprano
Michelle Trovato, soprano
Linda Collazo, mezzo soprano
Andrew Egbuchiem, countertenor
Anthony P. McGlaun, tenor
Byron Singleton, tenor
Roland Burks, bass-baritone
Blake Burroughs, bass-baritone

Sarah Arena, Frances Burgos-Linares, Sarah Downs, JoAnne Hoffman, Jeanne Marie Holcomb, Aley Kent, Laura Kolb-Araujo, Susan Kommel, Robert Lewis, Isaac Mann, Richard Mann, Chitra Raghavan, Ittai Ratzersdorfer, Gordon Reynolds, Lena Wu

Shining a light on the foundational document of the United States, Vertical Player Repertory presents a semi-staged performance of The Constitution by Benjamin Yarmolinsky, a setting for chorus and soloists of significant portions of the United States Constitution, including highlights of Articles 1-7, the Bill of Rights, and subsequent amendments.

Past performances:
Thursday, June 27, 2019, 7:30 pm
Saturday, June 29, 2019, 4:00 pm

THE CONSTITUTION was premiered as part of the fourth annual New York Opera Fest, joining over 30 New York City-based companies putting on over 30 events in venues around the city in May and June.

“miniatures Behind the Door 2019 series” is sponsored, in part, by the Greater New York Arts Development Fund of the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs, administered by Brooklyn Arts Council (BAC).

VPR is grateful for generous grants from The Tiger Baron Foundation for general support of this production and from The Masterworks Foundation to support the scenic design and art installation by Karni Dorell for The Constitution.


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