Important New Opera in this year's Midtown Opera Festival

Apr 4, 2019

The Falling and the Rising​ is a new American opera conceived by Sergeant First Class Ben Hilgert of the U.S. Army Soldiers' Chorus, inspired by Opera Memphis' Ghosts of Crosstown project in 2014.


Opera Memphis’ seventh annual MIDTOWN OPERA FESTIVAL is coming to Playhouse on the Square April 6-14, 2019. The Festival is anchored by the premiere performances of The Falling and the Rising, a new American opera composed by Zach Redler and written by Jerre Dye.

This world premiere opera chronicles the imagined journey of a soldier suspended inside a coma after a roadside attack. We follow our soldier as she makes her way through a coma-induced dreamscape punctuated by powerful encounters with other fellow service members, each on the brink of discovery. Together, they must find clarity, consciousness, and communal hope inside a strange and ever-shifting universe. Created from compiled interviews from returning soldiers at Walter Reed National Medical Center, Arlington Cemetery, and Fort Meade, The Falling and the Rising is an inspirational story of service, sacrifice, and connection inside uncertainty. This operatic soldier’s odyssey was created to honor the indomitable spirit of our military veterans and to shed light on the power of their often overlooked stories.

In this interview, Sergeant First Class Ben Hilgert, Opera Memphis General Director Ned Canty, and composer Zach Redler discuss the upcoming Midtown Opera Festival, the genesis of this new work, and the importance of the message it brings.

For tickets or call 901-257-3100