Harvey Weinstein opera could arrive in New York

Hopefully he won’t show his magic flute.

An opera about the Manhattan trial Harvey Weinstein is currently in production in Northern Ireland and could arrive in New York, its creator told The Post.

“There are talks about thinking outside the box in New York City, but it’s still very early days,” Conor Mitchell, director of the Belfast Ensemble, which stages opera, told The Post. “I think New York would be his natural home.”

For now, Mitchell, 43, says his plan is to launch “The Trial of Harvey Weinstein: An Opera” in time for the Belfast International Arts Festival in October. Rehearsals are scheduled to start in September.

“Belfast is a very politicized place. There is a real tradition here of very politically charged topics in the plays, ”Mitchell explained.

Harvey Weinstein
Harvey Weinstein was convicted of rape last year and sentenced to 23 years in prison.
Steven hirsch

Mitchell, who wrote the music himself, said he would cover the libretto directly from the six women who testified against Weinstein at his New York trial in 2020. The disgraced entertainment titan has been convicted of rape last year and sentenced to 23 years in prison.

The opera, which is still in the process of being conceptualized, will not be a typical courtroom drama – and there are no male actors playing the role of Weinstein.

“In a way, I don’t care about him. I care about the effect of his actions on others, ”Mitchell said of Weinstein. “The ability of music to express that. One of the main arguments of the play is “Where can music express what is not said here?” “”

Harvey Weinstein
Harvey Weinstein will be extradited to California to face a sexual assault trial.
Steven hirsch

“It is not a representation of a court case, but a work of art that responds to [the women’s] statements. It is not a physical recreation of events, ”he added. “I think one of the great theatrical experiences is what happens when Harvey Weinstein’s personal impact statement is sung by women who are impacted by his behavior.”

“Imagine six sopranos on stage with a huge amount of multimedia,” he added. “It’s about taking the words – fragments of statements, without creating named characters, or portraying a person on stage. It is the text that becomes music.

Large-scale news-based operas have long been a niche of the genre. A 2003 opera based on Jerry Springer had over 600 performances in London, while John Adams’ epic 1987 work “Nixon in China” was performed in Europe and North America.

Mitchell wrote a 2019 opera, “Abomination,” which explored homophobia in local politics in Northern Ireland. The Guardian called him “clear-eyed, redeeming and entertaining.”

The idea of ​​a Weinstein opera was not immediately rejected by Weinstein’s victims and their supporters.

“I would see this 100%, because as a survivor of Harvey Weinstein, I would both prepare for more potential trauma and form a formal opinion on the production based on facts,” Hayley Gripp, who accused Weinstein of trying to rape her, told the Post.

Lawyer Gloria Allred, who represented three of the witnesses who testified in the Weinstein criminal case, is also on board – if the women whose testimony is said to be used grant their permission.

Conor Mitchell
The terrible saga of Harvey Weinstein will be reinvented as an opera by the Belfast Ensemble of Northern Ireland.

“If they get the consent of the victims they plan to portray, then I support such an opera if it portrays the pain, anguish and psychological harm that a victim has suffered as a result of sexual assault. by Harvey Weinstein, ”she said.

The Weinstein team, however, said the play may end with an addendum.

“Well, they may have to produce a second act based on my client’s appeal to find out if his trial was fair,” his lawyer Imran H. Ansari told The Post.

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