Sara McKinnon

Opera in Three Acts

2001, rev. 2002.

Duration: 140 minutes

Libretto by Mark Medoff

Premiere: Doña Ana Lyric Opera, New Mexico State University, Las Cruces, July 27, 2001

Premiere of Revised Version: CU Opera at the University of Colorado in April 2003.

(Withdrawn, not available for production.)

Composer Notes: Playwright Mark Medoff and I wrote the first version of Sara McKinnon for Doña Ana Lyric Opera at New Mexico State University. After that production we made a number of changes, and the revised version was produced at the University of Colorado.

Both productions were enthusiastically received (see reviews). Nonetheless, based on feedback, we decided we needed to simplify the plot and focus more on the principal characters. We cut the number of named characters from twenty to nine. Simplifying the story gave me room to create more music for the principal characters.

Our initial effort to revise the opera, Rose in Flames, was workshopped at Utah Festival Opera in 2015. This workshop revealed the story needed to be even more concentrated and focused. Sadly, Mark Medoff's health began to worsen and he passed away from cancer in 2019.

For a few years I periodically tried to carry on that revision, but my storytelling ideas increasingly diverged from Mark's. Finally, I abandoned the idea of revising his libretto. Instead, I moved on to new projects. Eventually, these included writing a new libretto based on my divergent story ideas.