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$300,000 grant funds Long Beach Opera's new series 'Outer Limits'

November 3, 2011 |  1:29 pm


Long Beach Opera has long prided itself on being an edgy, experimental company that isn't afraid of taking artistic risks. Now the organization is headed in an even edgier and more experimental direction with a new program that is scheduled to launch next year.

"Outer Limits" will be a new sidebar series of programs that, the company states, will "feature musical outliers that defy classification." The series will include a "broad spectrum of music styles, theatrical innovation and experimental storytelling," and will be staged in intimate, alternative venues accommodating 300 people, said the company.

The inaugural production of "Outer Limits" will be Gavin Bryars' "Paper Nautilus" at the Aquarium of the Pacific in Long Beach in September. The ocean-themed production is a dramatic cantata for soprano, mezzo-soprano, two pianos and six percussionists.

"Outer Limits" is being financed by a three-year, $300,000 grant from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. The series will be comprised of at least one production in 2012 through 2015 and two productions starting in the 2016 fiscal year.

Long Beach Opera is led by artistic and general director Andreas Mitisek. The company said its budget stood at more than $1.2 million for the most recent fiscal year.


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-- David Ng

Photo: Andreas Mitisek, artistic and general director of Long Beach Opera. Credit: Bob Chamberlin / Los Angeles Times