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The world premiere of ‘The Snowy Day’ at Wortham Theater Center

Peter in bed (Ezra Jack Keats Foundation)

HOUSTON – This is such a magical time of the year and so many people look forward to it’s arrival. Something else they’re looking forward to is Houston Grand Opera’s world premiere of The Snowy Day December 9 through 19 at Houston’s Wortham Theater Center. Created by composer Joel Thompson and librettist Andrea Davis Pinkney, The Snowy Day is based on the classic children’s book by Ezra Jack Keats.

Written in 1962 and awarded the Caldecott medal in 1963, The Snowy Day broke the color barrier in mainstream publishing by being embraced across ethnic and social lines. Both book and opera recount the adventures of young Peter after he wakes up to the first snow of winter—the first winter when his parents have promised to let him play in the snow by himself. He sets off to explore, getting into adventures and learning lessons along the way.

The Snowy Day marks HGO’s 71st world premiere. The idea for an opera based on the book began to take form after soprano Julia Bullock brought the idea to HGO Artistic and Music Director Patrick Summers six years ago. Deborah Pope, Executive Director of the Ezra Jack Keats Foundation, came on board, and she put bestselling author Andrea Davis Pinkney’s name forward as a potential librettist during the preliminary stages of the opera’s creation. Pinkney, who in 2016 had authored A Poem for Peter, an homage to Keats and the legacy of Peter, signed on to adapt the story for the stage. In the summer of 2017, Summers recruited brilliant young composer Joel Thompson for the project, knowing he would be the perfect fit to breathe new life into the story of Peter. Tune into Houston Life Monday to get a special sneak peak of this magical production!


About the Author:

Louisiana born and raised, award-winning journalist, Cajun chef and spoken word poet.