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"The Theory of Everything" A new opera exploring the ideas of science, spirituality, the nature of consciousness and our search for meaning | Music by John David Earnest, Libretto by Nancy Rhodes | Commissioned and developed by Encompass New Opera Theatre - Brooklyn, New York

Encompass 2011 Gala, A Musical Salute! Honoring Marvin Hamlisch Musical Salute!
Honoring Marvin Hamlisch


Encompass New Opera Theatre, Brooklyn, New York, Ongoing Programs

Marie Kraja International Singing Competition

The Alliance of Resident Theatres/New York

Keeping American Music Theater / Opera Thriving
Focusing on the creation, development and production of new music theatre and classic American opera in ground-breaking productions, Encompass New Opera Theatre is one of the foremost leaders in the United States and New York City in charting a whole new ground for American Composers since 1975.

Encompass New Opera Theatre

Encompass Opera Up Coming Event

Jazz Cabaret Gala
  Wednesday, June 25th, 2014 at 7:00 PM

Klea Blackhurst
in highlights from her acclaimed tour-de-force on
the life and songbook of Ethel Merman

Klea Blackurst at Encompass Opera
With crackling wit and powerful vocals, Klea Blackhurst honors the songs and sass
of Ethel Merman and American Songbook favorites by Irving Berlin, Cole Porter,
Jerry Herman, Marvin Hamlisch and others, with Music Director and Pianist, Michael Rice.
“A powerhouse of energy and intelligence, she’ll blow you away.”?#8211;Time Out New York
“Simply sensational, Blackhurst will win you over with pluck, verve and talent…?/span> 
 –David Hurst, Next Magazine
Watch a video of Klea
Klea Blackhurst on YouTube

Join Encompass for a spectacular musical evening in a unique Tribeca loft with panoramic
outdoor views of the Hudson River that affords a magnificent setting for enjoying
tasty hors d’oeuvres and sipping wine. Good Music, Good Food, Good Wine!
DATE:   Wednesday, June 25, 2014 TIME:   7:00pm
PLACE:   66 Leonard Street, Penthouse* TICKETS:   $250 in advance
    New York, NY 10013      $300 day of event

* The Penthouse Home of Chip Seelig
is at 66 Leonard Street
 (between Church St. and Broadway)
and can be reached by taking
the 1 Train to Franklin St or
the A, C, E Trains to Canal Street

View Larger Map
  Buy Tickets 
Tickets and Reservations
(Visa / MC / AMEX accepted)

or call 718-398-4675

New American Opera Previews
by Composer/Librettist Richard Pearson Thomas
Program and Performer Information
Watch Richard Pearson Thomas discuss his project with Encompass Opera Theatre

"Look deep into nature, and then you will understand everything better."– Albert Einstein

Encompass Music & Film Festival
The Actors Fund Arts Center
160 Schermerhorn Street
Brooklyn, NY 11201


Encompass Music & Film Festival ?Bridging indigenous cultures and women’s wisdom with western science . . .

True stories from Africa, Kyrgyzstan, South America, New York City, Utah and cities around the world . . .

Told through soul-stirring films and paired with inspiring live musical performances that celebrate people protecting our planet.

Experience their art and then meet the filmmakers, musicians, singers and change-makers who are at work on behalf of us all.

Listen to A Better World Radio & TV's interview with Nancy Rhodes
Watch Richard Pearson Thomas discuss his project with Encompass Opera Theatre

Music & Film Festival Schedule
Program and Performer information
Thursday, February 27 ?7:00 pm
FROM THE HEART OF THE WORLD:  The Elder Brother’s Warning
A BBC Documentary, Directed By Alan Ereira

The Kogi, last survivors from the world of the
Incas and Aztecs, inhabit an isolated pyramid 18,000 feet above sea level. They call it “The Heart of the World?and their sacred duty is to protect it. In 1990, however, something was wrong. Snow stopped falling and the rivers were not so full. If their mountain was ill, then the world was in trouble. Experience their sincere message to us, their “younger brothers.?br />

Q & A with the filmmaker via Skype from Paris.

Live Music: Leaf Arrow Storytellers, Joe Cross (Caddo/Potawatani) and Donna Couteau (Sac/Fox).

Friday, February 28 ?:00 pm
A Tribe of Heart Documentary by Jenny Stein and James LaVeck

A riveting story of transformation and healing, the film follows the story of five farmers, an animal rescuer and a humane police officer who each embark on a journey of awakening conscience. This film shatters stereotypical notions of farmers, farm life, and farm animals themselves.

Q & A with filmmaker James LaVeck.

Live Music: Adagietto/Presto by Richard Pearson Thomas, composer/pianist & Naho Parrini, violinist.

Saturday, March 1 ?7:00 pm
Produced & Directed
By Beth Gage and George Gage

In 2008, as the government tried to gift the energy and mining industries thousands of acres of pristine Utah wilderness via a widely disputed federal auction, college student Tim DeChristopher decided to monkey-wrench the process. BIDDER 70 tells the story of this peaceful warrior who won the auction with no intention to drill.

Q & A with Deborah Cipolla-Dennis, founding member of The Dryden Resources Awareness Coalition (DRAC), that spearheaded the successful effort to prohibit oil and gas drilling, including fracking, in Dryden, NY.

Live Music: La Vita Duo, classical guitarist Giacomo and soprano Jeanai La Vita performed for the UN Stockholm Convention Concert on the Environment in Geneva, Switzerland.

Sunday, March 2 ?Matinee ?3:00 pm


Directed by Suzan Beraza, Produced by Michelle Hill
Special Event for Families and Children


Bag It is a touching and often flat-out funny
film, where we follow “everyman?Jeb Berrier, an average American who decides to take a closer look at our cultural love affair with plastics, and its impacts on the ocean, wildlife, and our health.

Q & A with Jeb Berrier via Skype.

Special Live Music for Kids.

Wednesday, March 5 ?7:00 pm


Directed & Produced by
Lisa Merton and Alan Dater


This film tells the dramatic story of the 2004 Nobel Peace Prize Laureate, Wangari Maathai from Kenya, whose simple act of planting trees grew into a nationwide movement to safeguard the environment, protect human rights and defend democracy.

Q & A with Lauren Berger, Green Belt USA, the organization Wangari Maathai founded.

Live African Music & Dance.

Thursday, March 6 ?7:00 pm


Produced & Directed by Ian Cheney


The filmmaker asks a simple question - do we need the stars? Exploring the threat of killer asteroids in Hawaii, tracking hatching turtles along the Florida coast, and rescuing injured birds on Chicago streets, Cheney unravels the myriad implications of a globe glittering with lights.

Q & A with the filmmaker.

Live Music: “Ain’t it a Pretty Night? from, Susannah by Carlisle Floyd, sung by Lindsay Rider, soprano.

Friday, March 7 ?7:00 pm
Produced & Directed By Emily Driscoll

This film follows efforts to prevent the extinction of oyster reefs, which keep our oceans healthy. Today, because of overfishing and pollution, these reefs are ‘the most severely impacted marine habitat on Earth.?Scientists, officials, artists and environmentalists fight to bring oysters back to former oyster capital of the world, New York Harbor.

Q & A with filmmaker and The Harbor School Students who are growing the oysters.

Live Music: La Vita Duo ?Classical guitar and soprano.

Saturday, March 8 ?7:00 pm


Produced & Directed by Alan Ereira


A follow-up to From the Heart of the World by Alan Ereira which was shown at the beginning of the festival. Learn what the Kogi are telling us today about the state of our world.

Q & A with the filmmaker via Skype from Paris.

Live Music: Leaf Arrow Storytellers, Joe Cross (Caddo/Potawatani) and Donna Couteau (Sac/Fox).

Sunday, March 9 ?3:00 pm


By Andrea Odezynska


This documentary that takes us into the lives of Kyrgyz women, showing how they overcame poverty and made their villages more sustainable through traditional crafts.
Breathtaking mountain ranges are the backdrop of some of the reenactments of Kyrgyz folklore and fables interwoven throughout.


Q & A with Filmmaker.

Live Music: Kyrgyz musicians from Central Asia.

Closing Reception: Special Fashion Show, Organic Clothing designed by Sydney Greenley-Kois

New Musical for Children: A Cow Named Cow
A Cow Named Cow is an original musical farce for children (and their parents) with book and lyrics by Michael MacKenzie Wills (creator/writer/director of the MAC Award winning Operation Opera, and the New York Times recommended kid’s show The Adventures of Superbunny), music by C. Colby Sachs (composer of the notorious Amy Fisher: The Musical), and based on the ?strong>You Color It?storybook series A Cow Named Cow by award winning author Amber L. Spradlin.

With hummable songs and catchy lyrics, A Cow Named Cow teaches us the importance of friends and family. When Cow is separated from his herd he meets both friend and foe and has to use teamwork to come up with a plan to stop a villain from taking over the world. This comedy is aimed to please both parents and children of all ages.

Encompass New Opera Theatre creates and produces adventurous new music drama and opera that explores our place in the universe and the inter-connection of nature through compelling human stories.  Angel of the Amazon, about protecting the rain forest, The Astronaut’s Tale, and The Theory of Everything, exploring quantum physics and indigenous cosmology were produced in its Science & Arts program.
The Environmental Education Fund provides training, mentoring and resources to help individuals and organizations plan and hold an environmental festival.  Creative mediums such as film help to spread awareness and the discussions following the films often inspire collaborations that lead to solutions. A new awareness is key to solving our complex environmental crisis.



This season, Encompass New Opera Theatre hosting two singers from the United States,
who will perform on National Albanian Television in a worldwide classical
opera competition, established by Albanian producer, Zana Cela.
  Elizabeth Baldwin
Elizabeth Baldwin
Tyler Putnam
José Rubio
Read More

A Musical Salute!
Honoring his 90th Birthday and Celebrating the Lyrics and Music of
Sheldon Harnick - Encompass New Opera Theatr
Fiorello, She Loves Me, Fiddler On the Roof, The Rothschilds, The Apple Tree,
The Umbrellas of Cherbourg, Pinocchio, A Wonderful Life, Free To Be....You and Me
At the 90th Birthday Gala Celebration for Sheldon Harnick
Encompass presented him with a beautiful keepsake Tribute Booklet
of greetings and salutations from his friends, fans and colleagues,
and honored him with a Lifetime Achievement Award.
Read about the Celebration for Sheldon Harnick
Gold Centerfold Full Page Greeting Half and Quarter Page Greetings
Encompass New Opera Theatre Tribute Booklet Gold Centerfold Encompass New Opera Theatre Tribute Booklet Encompass New Opera Theatre Tribute Booklet

SINGING STEIN: Three Sisters Who Are Not Sisters
By Ned Rorem and Gertrude Stein
Back by Popular Demand!
Theatre/Dates tba

The Astronaut’s Tale
by composer Charles Fussell and librettist Jack Larson

Theatre/Dates tba

Highlights from The Astronaut's Tale (Music by Charles Fussell, Libretto by Jack Larson) were presented as part of
New American Opera Previews: From Page to Stage on March 18, 2012 at Manhattan School of Music, Greenfield Hall. Artistic Director Nancy Rhodes was also interviewd on FQXi Science Foundation's Community Radio about The Astronaut's Tale and Encompass' most recent opera commission, The Theory of Everything.

Read more about The Astronaut's Tale on our New American Opera Previews: From Page to Stage page.

Encompass' Jazz Cabaret Gala Honoring
Judy Kaye
Two time Tony-Award Winning Broadway & Opera Star
and Pianist Dennis Buck

On Wednesday, June 19, 2013 two time Tony Award Winning Broadway & Opera Star, Judy Kaye, currently featured as Duchess Estonia Dulworth in Broadway’s Nice Work If You Can Get It, sings a solo cabaret act in an intimate Tribeca penthouse with panoramic views of the Hudson River. 

On the piano will be Dennis Buck, accompanist and collaborator for Jerry Herman, Julie Wilson, Eartha Kitt, K.T. Sullivan, Lucie Arnaz and dozens of other stars.

Judy Kaye's illustrious career has seen her win Tony Awards for the roles of Carlotta in The Phantom of the Opera, and Duchess Estonia Dulworth in Nice Work If You Can Get It, play Rizzo in Grease, create the role of Emma Goldman in Ragtime and garner a Tony Nomination for the lead role of Florence Foster Jenkins in Souvenir.

Judy has also performed leading opera roles with major companies such as The Santa Fe Opera.

Encompass Opera Salutes Judy Kaye
Read about the Gala honoring Judy Kaye and see the photos.

New American Opera Previews
From Page to Stage
A Haunting Celtic Tale of a powerful man, an ardent lover, and a mysterious
woman from the otherworld,in a mythological and psychological thriller.

Featuring award-winning Encompass Singers and Composer
Brittany Palmer
Brittany Palmer

Eapen Leubner
Eapen Leubner
David Salsbery Fry
David Salsbery Fry
King Conchubar
Jane Shaulis
Jane Shaulis
Thomas Kelso
  Artistic Director/Librettist
Nancy Rhoder
Nancy Rhodes
Music Director/Pianist
Mara Waldman
Mara Waldman
Sameer Ramchandran
Sameer Ramchandran
    Angela Huff
Following the performance, Midge Woolsey of WQXR Radio moderated
an onstage discussion with the Composer, Singers, and Musical Team.

Music for the Soul and Mind
February 10, 2013 at
The National Opera America Center

Featuring award-winning Encompass Composers and Singers
Sara Heaton
Sara Heaton
Jane Shaulis
Jane Shaulis
Eapen Leubner
Eapen Leubner
Brittany Palmer
Brittany Palmer
Welcoming Violinist Stephanie Chase
Stephanie Chase
Founder and Artistic Director of the Music of the Spheres Society,
performing Edward Applebaum’s Landscape of Dreams, a work for solo violin composed
for her and inspired by Gabriel Garcia Marquez’s novel, Love in the Time of Cholera. 
The piece reveals the romantic story of a love that remained unrequited until old age.
Meet the Composers
Mira J. Spektor
Mira J. Spektor
Doug Brandtt
Doug Brandt
John Davie Earnest
John David Earnest

Charles Fussell

Sameer Ramchandran

Simon Gjoni
Meet the Composers to experience highlights from their new operas
Giovanni the Fearless (lyrics by Carolyn Balducci),
The Gentlest Lady, from a Song Cycle based on poems by Dorothy Parker,
The Theory of Everything, The Astronaut’s Tale, and Deirdre,
based on W.B. Yeats' haunting Celtic tale.

  Artistic Director/Librettist
Nancy Rhoder
Nancy Rhodes
Music Director/Pianist
Mara Waldman
Mara Waldman
Hermira Gjoni
Hermira Gjoni

Encompass Tenors Performed Internationally
in "Tre Tenoret" Concert Broadcast on New Year's Day!

Read about the event

Albania Event
Elizabeth Lewis of the American Embassy in Albania wrote us on December 27th:
“Eapen and Matt were extraordinary!  And the concert was a smashing success.  Thanks for your pivotal role
in making it happen for us.   The concert will be broadcast on Albanian Public Television on New Year’s Day. 
Our heartfelt thanks to you for all of your help in finding such wonderful tenors.?/span>

Holidays at Home

Read about the event

Adrianne Hick   Maria Waldman
The National Arts Club was the beautiful setting for the annual Encompass Holiday Concert this year
starring Adrianne Hick, who has performed on tour with Les Miserables and with Encompass productions
of Four Saints in Three Acts and I Tre Compagni.  Mara Waldman accompanied her on piano.

Encompass 2012 Gala
A Musical Salute! Honoring Alan Menken

Read about the event

Alan Menken at the piano
Our Gala this year, honoring the contributions of eight-time, Oscar-winning composer Alan Menken,
was a glorious night of exciting musical performances, one-moment-in-time experience
for all of us who attended, like “a well-produced cabaret act.?THE WALL STREET JOURNAL

Explore the vision, wit and genius of Gertrude Stein in music!

Ned Rorem's Three Sisters Who Are Not Sisters
Virgil Thomson's Capital Capitals
Texts by Gertrude Stein

Encompass' Spring Opera at Symphony Space
two performances April 27, 2012

and as part of Symphony Space's
Wall to Wall: Gertrude's Paris
May 5, 2012

Singing Stein
Photo by Stephen Sorokoff

Photo by Charles Redmond
Singing Stein - Ned Rorem's Three Sisters Who Are Not Sisters and Virgil Thomson's Capital Capitals - Texts by Gertrude Stein - Produced by Encompass New Opera Theatre at Symphony Space, April 2012
Read more on our Singing Stein page.

The New York Times review for Encompass New Opera Theatre's production of "Shaw Sings"
Convening a Salon for Gertrude Stein and Friends
‘Wall to Wall Gertrude’s Paris’ at Symphony Space

"In both [works] the Encompass singers were ideally stylish and playful."
-Steve Smith, The New York Times

Read more on our Singing Stein page.

Encompass New Opera Theatre is pleased to announce that

Evan Mack's Angel of the Amazon is now available on CD!

with the original New York City World Premiere cast.
Encompass New Opera Theatre produced the World Premiere in May 2011.

For more information on Angel of the Amazon, click here.

Angel of the Amazon Angel of the Amazon Angel of the Amazon
Our soaring production of Evan Mack’s Angel of the Amazon, inspired by the true story of
Sister Dorothy Stang who courageously protected the Brazilian Rainforest and the land rights of
indigenous families.  Opera News praised the music, our singers, and the orchestra who
“play with great expressive vigor and gratifyingly pure intonation.?

4th Annual Jazz-Cabaret Gala
Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Tribeca, New York City

Encompass celebrated another spectacular musical evening hosted by Chip Seelig and Bettye Martin Musham in Tribeca with panoramic views of the Hudson River and beautiful plantings - a magnificent setting for sipping wine and hearing the amazing talents of the award-winning, Tony-nominated singers, songwriters, actresses, the renowned Callaway sisters, Liz Callaway and Ann Hampton Callaway.

Liz Callaway - Encopmass New Opera Theatre, Brooklyn, New York - Jazz Cabaret Gala Ann Hampton Callaway - Encompass New Opera Theatre, Brooklyn, New York - Jazz Cabaret Gala
“They are fantastic, sensational, entertaining. They represent everything that a cabaret act can offer.”
~Donald Pippin, acclaimed Broadway musical director/composer/arranger

Encompass 2011 Gala
A Musical Salute! Honoring Marvin Hamlisch

The Gala honoring Marvin Hamlisch was through the roof! The entire evening was a huge celebration! The talent were amazing and each performer sang Marvin's songs with passion, beauty and joy!
Read all about the evening here.
Encompass 2011 Gala, A Musical Salute! Honoring Marvin Hamlisch
Honoree Marvin Hamlish with Artistic
Director Nancy Rhodes and Board
Chairman Daniel De Siena

The Marie Kraja International Singing Competition

Tirana, Albania
October 25 - 30, 2011


Sara sang Violeta's Aria from La Traviata.

Ricardo Rivera was highly regarded by the Jury Members for his talent and fine singing. He was one of the Finalists and he gave a great performance, and he was an audience favorite too.

The American Embassy Public Affairs Officer, Elizabeth Lewis, attended the two performances, and she was delighted. We thanked her and the Embassy for their support of our singers.

Sara Heaton, Soprano - hosted by Encompass New Opera Theatre in the Marie Kraja International Singing Competition 2011 in Tirana, Albania 1st Place Winner
Sara Heaton

Ricardo Rivera, Baritone - hosted by Encompass New Opera Theatre in the Marie Kraja International Singing Competition 2011 in Tirana, AlbaniaFinalist
Ricardo Rivera

For more information, photos, and singers previously hosted by Encompass, see our Marie Kraja page.

Encompass New Opera Theatre’s productions and activities are made possible with public funds from The National Endowment for the Arts, Access to Excellence; The New York State Council on the Arts, (a state agency); and with funding support from the Cornelius N. Bliss Memorial Fund; the Richard J. Fasenmyer Foundation; the Dramatists Guild Fund; the Edith Meiser Foundation; the Estate of Evelyn Metzger; Opera Index; the Peckham Family Foundation; the Sisters of Notre Dame de Namur (for Angel of the Amazon); Tuft Family Foundation, and the Virgil Thomson Foundation.

Thank you to Encompass Corporate Funders:

Abrams Artists Agency
ASCAP, Atlantic Group, Barry Kellman
Axis Lighting
Bernhard Design, BMI, Carlin America, Inc.
Commercial Flooring
Commonwealth Bank of Australia, Ian Philips
Dodger Properties
Geiger International
Haworth, Inc.
International Lights
Jujamcyn Theatres
Knoll Furniture

Lehr Construction
Music Theatre International
Picasso Lighting
Shaw Industries
the Shubert Organization, Inc.
Strategic Global Investments
Stuart Portfolio Consultants
W.B. Wood
Wolf Gordon, Inc.
Workwell Partners

Thank you to our Patrons:

Cheryl Aaron
Lynn Ahrens & Stephen Flaherty
Alan & Arlene Alda
Gabrielle Aversa (CIC, Inc.)
Susan Baker & Michael Lynch
Rena Bartos
Renee D. Baruch
Rick Berube
Vincent Biscione
Barbara Bliss
Leonora Bloom
Mitchell Bloomberg
Etty & Jacob Bousso
Elliot H. Brown
Edward Payson Call
Eleanore Caracciolo
Lois & Dave Carey
Nadine & Norman Carey
Nancy Ford Charles
Jane Clegg
Randy Coleman
Tom & Jayne Coleman
Gretchen Cryer
Allen Davis III
Sara Deeley
Mayumi Deguchi
Linda Dennery (in honor of Bettye Martin Musham)
Daniel J. De Siena
Thelma Drew
Pamela Drexel
Carmine Esposito
Dr. Joe Feinberg
Gloria E. Fieldcamp
Karen Fine
Stuart Firestein
Carole Forster
Donald W. Fowle
Ilsa Gilbert
Brian Gray
Stuart & David Griffith
Suzanne C. Griffith
Philip Hagemann
Sheldon & Margery Harnick
Neil Harvey
Morton & Ellen Hertzmark
Ann Marie Hill
William Hirshberg
Gerald Homan
John C. Jamison
Richard C. Johnson
John Kander
Ginger Karren
Lynn Kearney
Craig Kinosian
Kenneth Kleiman
Gary Kolanchick
Isobel Robins Konecky

Charles Koppelman
Jamie Kushwick
Russ Lapso
Susan Lehman
Charles K. Loving
Edward Mack
James S. Marcus
Greg & C. Matloff
Julie May (Innovant)
Adelaide Mestre
Grace E. McClorey
Brigid McDermott
Neil McKelvie
Agnes & James Metzger
Mathy & Andrew Mezey
Vicki Modell
Victoria Moran
Bettye Martin Musham
Anh-Tuyet Nguyen
Derrick Nielsen (Svend Nielsen Ltd.)
Carole O’Blenes
Rita O’Connor & Ted Schell
Jon Offerman
Alex Porter
Harold Prince
James C. Raymond
Steven Ritzel
Mary Rodgers & Henry Guettel
Patricia Rosenfield
Barry & Lizanne Rosenstein
Daryl Roth
Linda Namias Samuels
Charles Saputo
Lois G. Schwartz
Robert Hill Schwartz
William Schwinghammer
Chip Seelig
Theodore P. and Mary Jo Shen
Susan Shively
Harriet Slaughter
Nancy Sondag
Michael Spresser
Guy Stern
Cynthia Stillwell
Charles Strouse
Debra Tanger
Kenneth & Jean Telljohnn
Suzanne Tick
Edward Thomas
Marge Thomas
Charles & Sylvia Trager
Honey Waldman
Patricia Ward
Jody Weisman
Christina Weppner
Barbara & Peter Westergaard
Lester Wigler
Maury Yeston







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