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Opera Lafayette presents Stradella's La Susanna

Ryan Brown

Washington's Opera Lafayette and New York's Heartbeat Opera colllaborate on a staging of Alessandro Stradella's oratorio La Susanna, based on the story of Susanna and the Elders from the Book of Daniel. By assigning the roles of the narrator and Daniel to women stage director Ethan Heard and music director Ryan Brown transform this 17th-century masterpiece into a theater work startingly relevant to the present moment, giving women ownership over this tale of sexual harrassment, patriarchal oppression and the search for truth in an unequal society. WETA's James Jacobs speaks with both directors about this groundbreaking production. La Susanna plays at the Kennedy Center Terrace Theater April 21 and 22 and at the Brooklyn Academy of Music Fishman Space May 2-5.