Newspeak director David T. Little’s opera Dog Days, a saga of postapocalyptic survival based on a short story by Judy Budnitz, will have its full-length premiere on Sept. 29 as part of the Peak Performances series at the Kasser Theater in Montclair, N.J., with additional presentations through Oct. 7. With libretto by Royce Vavrek, direction by Robert Woodruff, and musical direction by Alan Pierson, Dog Days also features John Kelly and vocalists James Bobick, Marnie Breckenridge, Cherry Duke, Michael Marcotte, Peter Tantsits, and Lauren Worsham, with chamber ensemble Newspeak and special guests.

Steve Smith of the New York Times recently featured the opera in a season preview article, which is available here.

Based on a short story by Judy Budnitz, Dog Days is a contemporary opera that investigates the psychology of a working class American family against a not-so-distant-future wartime scenario.  A collaboration with librettist Royce Vavrek, this black comedy asks: is it madness, delusion, or human / animal instinct that guides us through severely trying times?  Where exactly is the line between animal and human?  At what point must we give in to our animal instincts merely to survive?  Scenes from Dog Days was commissioned by Carnegie Hall through The Weill Music Institute, and an expanded version was featured in New York City Opera’s 2010 VOX program.  The completed work was commissioned by Peak Performances in Montclair, NJ in association with Beth Morrison Projects.  For more info on the opera, click here.

In addition, David T. Little will be releasing his New Amsterdam Records solo debut record featuring Third Coast Percussion in the future. The album will feature David’s Haunt of Last Nightfall, which is scored for extended percussion and synthesizers. Stay tuned for more info!