“Gilgamesh and Enkidu”
An original opera thesis by Joseph Taff ’13
Based on the first half of the ancient Mesopotamian “Epic of Gilgamesh,” “Gilgamesh and Enkidu” follows the exploits of the legendary King Gilgamesh and his companion Enkidu as the two slay powerful demons (heedless of the potential consequences) until Enkidu’s death at the hands of the angered gods. The music, written for strings, clarinet and harpsichord, with chorus and soloists, draws heavily on the baroque opera tradition established by composers such as George Frideric Handel, Claudio Monteverdi and Henry Purcell. The libretto is adapted from a wonderful English rendering of the epic by the renowned poet and translator David Ferry ’46. Soloists include Timothy Shirriffs as Gilgamesh, Geoffrey Herrmann as Enkidu, Dorie Goldman as Rimat-Ninsun, Libby Maxey as Ishtar and Shelly Roberts as Aruru and Shamhat. The concert is free and open to the public; seating is by general admission.