Tonya & Nancy: The Opera

February 23 & 25, 2010
At the Bedlam Theatre & Camp Bar


Mixed Precipitation and the Dead Composers’ Society teamed up to present an evening of opera and competitive figure skating just in time for the Winter Olympics in Vancouver!

We presented the mid-west premier of the 2006 chamber opera, Tonya and Nancy: The Opera by Abigail Al-Doory Cross and Elizabeth Searle, followed by a public showing of the Ladies’ Figure Skating events complete with trivia contents and gaudy figure skating outfits!

Our opera is based on the events of the 1994 Winter Olympics in Lillehammer and the knee clubbing scandal and Elizabeth’s Searle’s short story collection Celebrities in Disgrace. The libretto is based on the text of interviews, courtroom reports and public statements by the two skaters. It also recreates the action of the 1994 competition that became of the most watched women’s sporting events in history.

This chamber opera was named one of the top three chamber operas of 2006 by Opera Vista. National critics responded positively to the premiere production at American Repertory Theatre. The Boston Herald declared, “Loved the opera… it’s a real knee slapper.” And the Associated Press stated, “the verismo production portrays the skaters not as rivals, but more as a pair, singing for the audiences’ sympathy.”