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 The Emperor Jones (opera)

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tungduong_9102



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PostSubject: The Emperor Jones (opera)   Sun Dec 26, 2010 2:30 am

The Emperor Jones is an opera in two acts with a prologue and interlude composed by Louis Gruenberg to an English language libretto adapted by Kathleen De Jaffa and the composer from Eugene O'Neill's 1920 play, The Emperor Jones. It premiered on January 7, 1933 at the Metropolitan Opera in New York City with Lawrence Tibbett in the title role. Set on an unnamed island in the West Indies, the opera tells the story of African American Brutus Jones, a former Pullman porter and ex-convict who escaped to the island, set himself up as its tyrannical "Emperor", and became rich by exploiting the natives. The natives start a revolt against him, and as he tries to escape through the jungle, he is haunted by visions of his past life and the man he had murdered. As the natives close in, he commits suicide using the silver bullet which he had worn around his neck as a good-luck charm. With a score that incorporates elements of jazz and negro spirituals, The Emperor Jones was the eleventh American opera to premiere at the Met, and has continued to be performed into the 21st century, albeit rarely.

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