UC San Diego
Fusion, Imagination and Translation: The Beowulf Opera Process
- Author(s): Byers, Barbara Lee
- Advisor(s): Davis, Anthony C
- et al.
The opera Beowulf was performed on May 18, 2018 at the UCSD Experimental Theater, as the culmination of thesis research, collaboration, and composition by the author. Folk, metal, and eastern European musical traditions were primary influences on the score of the Beowulf opera. Conceptual research on the materiality of memory had a strong influence on the themes explored in the opera. Materials, puppets and masks were created in a collaboration with research to express a new way of looking at the Beowulf characters. The historic and contemporary voices of women in society were expressed in the opera through the character of Grendel's mother. Themes of the artistic and literary translation process was evident in the use of multiple languages and mediums throughout the opera. All of these research and creative processes were integral in weaving together the final performance.