For six consecutive nights — October 3-8, 2018 — 1,000 singers from across New York City come together on the High Line (NYC’s mile-long elevated linear park) for the world premiere of the mile-long opera — conceived by architects Diller Scofidio + Renfro and David Lang, with music by Lang, text by Anne Carson and Claudia Rankine, and staging by directors Elizabeth Diller and Lynsey Peisinger. Audience members will be active participants in this ambitious work as they walk along the park. Moving in and out of groups of singers, the audience will be immersed in hundreds of stories inspired by the accounts of a wide range of New Yorkers, about life in our rapidly changing city.
The stories sung in the opera have been gathered through first-hand interviews with residents throughout the city, asking what 7:00 pm means to them. While 7:00 pm almost universally represents a time of transition from day to night, when people shift from one activity to the next, these conversations reveal a vast spectrum of feelings and perspectives—and, by extension, represent the diverse character of the city’s inhabitants and their individual experiences.
Lang has set Carson and Rankine’s text to be sung by the immense chorus, led by conductor Donald Nally. Elizabeth Diller and co-director Lynsey Peisinger is staging the performance along the entire length of the elevated park.
The event challenges conventions of what opera is and whom it is for. Set in a public space, the opera invites all New Yorkers to join in and experience the performances at close range.
“The Mile-Long Opera: a biography of 7 o’clock” is produced by Diller Scofidio + Renfro, the High Line, and The OFFICE performing arts + film. This project would not be possible without the generous support of Target, which is the presenting sponsor, or the partnership of the NYC Department of Parks & Recreation.
Please note: Tickets for the mile-long opera are currently unavailable. A stand-by line will form prior to each concert; as well, the opera will be able to be viewed in 360-video. For more information on seeing the performance, please go to: https://milelongopera.com/