Ouroboros is a three-part exploration of life, death and rebirth, as symbolized by the ancient Greek icon of a serpent eating its own tail. The trilogy, produced by Beth Morrison Projects and The Friends of Madame White Snake, will be presented in Boston in the fall of 2016, both as individual operas and as seven hour full-day events. The production will bring together an acclaimed artistic team, including conductors Carolyn Kuan, Julian Wachner, and Lan Shui, and composers Zhou Long, Paola Prestini, and Scott Wheeler. Many extraordinary Boston music institutions such as The New England Conservatory of Music, The Boston Children’s Chorus, Arts Emerson, The Boston Children’s Museum and the Celebrity Series of Boston are participating in the project.
Gilgamesh is the story of Ming, son of Madame White Snake, half demon-half man, abandoned during his mother's epic battle with the Abbot. He is identified with the protagonist of the Sumerian Epic, "Gilgamesh", two-thirds god, one-third man. He encounters his mother for the first time in her human form and imprisoned by the Abbot in the Golden Mountain Monastery. She reveals his birthright - the power to control the waters and begs him to use this power to save her. Ming returns home to find that his wife, Ku, has just given birth to a white, iridescent baby girl who resembles her grandmother. He gives the baby to the green snake, Xiao Qing, who had taken him as a baby away from the floodwaters. He returns to the Monastery. A robe and empty alms bowl are all that are left. Ming dons the robe, takes the alms bow and leaves.
Conceived by Charles and Cerise Jacobs
Directed by Michael Counts
Composed by Paola Prestini
Conducted by Julian Wachner