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Krannert Center/Lyric Theatre @ Illinois Supported Work Wins Pulitzer Prize

Ellen Reid

April 2019

Krannert Center extends its congratulations to composer Ellen Reid for being awarded the 2019 Pulitzer Prize in Music. Reid is a recipient of this prestigious honor for her new opera p r i s m, created with librettist Roxie Perkins.

Lyric Theatre @ Illinois, in conjunction with Krannert Center, hosted Reid, Perkins, director James Darrah, and producer Beth Morrison for a workshop of p r i s m in April 2018. Under the guidance of Lyric Theatre co-director Julie Gunn, students in the Opera Scenes class worked on the piece with the p r i s m team. The professional artists also engaged songwriting students from the University of Illinois School of Music and attended a performance of Lyric Theatre’s production of She Loves Me.

p r i s m is a bold, original exploration of the psychological trauma a young woman experiences after she is sexually assaulted. Equally complex is her relationship with her mother; the two principal characters appear trapped in a conventionally feminine world as they navigate survival, abandonment, blame, and agency. This year’s Pulitzer Prize jury commends Reid for using “sophisticated vocal writing and striking instrumental timbres to confront difficult subject matter.”


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