Nico Muhly to Host and Perform at Le Poisson Rouge

April 18, 2013

Nico Muhly to Host and Perform in
“An Evening with Nico Muhly, Two Boys, and other works”
Tuesday, May 14 at Le Poisson Rouge

 Metropolitan Opera singers Jennifer Zetlan and Paul Appleby join Muhly, violist Nadia Sirota, and violin duo Angela and Jennifer Chun in an eclectic evening of
song including selections from Muhly’s new opera, Two Boys

 New York, NY (updated April 29) – The Metropolitan Opera and Le Poisson Rouge announced details for “An Evening with Nico Muhly, Two Boys, and other works,” two concerts at Le Poisson Rouge on Tuesday, May 14 at 7:30 p.m. and 10 p.m. Metropolitan Opera singers Jennifer Zetlan and Paul Appleby will be joined by the composer on piano. Muhly will also perform selections for piano and viola with featured artist Nadia Sirota, his frequent collaborator. Special guests will include violin duo Angela and Jennifer Chun.

The concerts, which anticipate the Met premiere of Muhly’s opera Two Boys in October 2013, will feature a diverse repertory curated by the composer, ranging from early music to contemporary work and including two arias from Two Boys. Appleby, who will star as Brian in Two Boys this fall, will perform the character’s Act I aria “I’m Only Sixteen.” Zetlan, who will also appear in Two Boys as Rebecca, will sing the character’s Act I aria, “I’m Scared For My Life.”

Tickets are available through Le Poisson Rouge for $35 (seated) or $20 (standing) at (212) 505-3474 or Standing room tickets will be sold at $25 on the day of the performance, subject to availability. Underwriting for the Muhly concerts has been provided by a generous gift from Dr. Coco Lazaroff.

"A work of dark beauty...a landmark in the career of an important artist" (The New York Times)," Two Boys marked the "auspicious operatic debut" (London Independent) of American composer Nico Muhly, who was 29 when the Met commission premiered in London in June 2011. With a libretto by celebrated playwright Craig Lucas, Two Boys explores the shadowy world of the Internet as a detective takes on what initially seems to be to be a straightforward case—the stabbing of one teenage boy by another—and discovers a tangled web of online intrigue. This striking new work, conducted by David Robertson and staged by Bartlett Sher in a co-production with English National Opera, receives its Met premiere on October 21, 2013 and runs through November 14, 2013.

Muhly has composed a wide scope of work for ensembles, soloists and organizations including the New York Philharmonic, American Symphony Orchestra, Boston Pops, Chicago Symphony, Carnegie Hall, New York City Ballet, Paris Opéra Ballet, soprano Jessica Rivera, countertenor Iestyn Davies, violinist Hilary Hahn, choreographer Benjamin Millepied, and designer/illustrator Maira Kalman. Recently, the Los Angeles Master Chorale and Decca released an entire disc of Muhly’s choral music, A Good Understanding. The Aurora Orchestra recorded his Seeing is Believing, and with choreographer Stephen Petronio, Muhly created the evening-length I Drink the Air Before Me, both of which were also released on Decca. His chamber opera, Dark Sisters, commissioned by the Opera Company of Philadelphia, Music Theatre Group, and the Gotham Chamber Opera, premiered in New York in the fall of 2012. Muhly’s film credits include scores for Joshua (2007), Margaret (2009), and Academy Award Best Picture nominee The Reader (2008); all have been recorded and released commercially.

Appleby is a graduate of the Met’s Lindemann Young Artist Development Program and has appeared at the Met as Brighella in Strauss’s Ariadne auf Naxos, Demetrius in the world premiere of the Baroque pastiche The Enchanted Island, and Hylas in this season’s revival of Berlioz’s Les Troyens. Zetlan, a rising soprano who has sung at the Met in Prokofiev’s War and Peace, Mussorgsky’s Boris Godunov, Verdi’s Macbeth, and Mozart’s Le Nozze di Figaro, will sing the role of Rebecca in the Met premiere of Two Boys. Sirota has given critically acclaimed performances of new works and commissions by Muhly, Marcos Balter, Caleb Burhans, Judd Greenstein, Missy Mazzoli, and other major contemporary composers. She performs regularly with, among others, the Meredith Monk Ensemble, Alarm Will Sound, and the Wordless Music Orchestra. The dynamic violin duo, sisters Angela and Jennifer Chun, has appeared under the baton of renowned conductors Iván Fischer, Zubin Mehta, André Previn, and Leonard Slatkin at venues including Carnegie Hall, the Kennedy Center, Lincoln Center, and Covent Garden. In 2010, the duo released their latest album, Bartok: 44 Duos for 2 Violins, to great acclaim.


“An Evening with Nico Muhly, Two Boys, and other works” marks the second collaboration between the Metropolitan Opera and Le Poisson Rouge. The partnership started in October 2012 with “An Evening with Thomas Adès & The Tempest.” With the composer at the piano, that evening explored the music of Ives, Purcell, Stravinsky, and Tippett, as well as selections from Adès’s The Tempest, which was performed at the Met last fall. Metropolitan Opera singers Simon Keenlyside, Kate Lindsey, and Iestyn Davies were featured.

Le Poisson Rouge is a multimedia art cabaret founded by musicians on the site of the historic Village Gate. Dedicated to the fusion of popular and art cultures in music, film, theater, dance, and fine art, the venue's mission is to revive the symbiotic relationship between art and revelry; to establish a creative asylum for both artists and audiences.