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Lynn Nottage and Ricky Ian Gordon's Intimate Apparel Opera to Have Premiere

Bartlett Sher will direct the production in 2020 at Lincoln Center Theater.

Lynn Nottage will pen the libretto for an operatic adaptation of her play Intimate Apparel.
(© David Gordon)

Lincoln Center Theater will present Intimate Apparel, a new opera based on Lynn Nottage's award-winning drama, with a libretto by Nottage and score by Ricky Ian Gordon. Directed by Bartlett Sher, the production will begin performances February 27, 2020, at the Mitzi E. Newhouse Theater, with opening night set for March 23.

Set in turn-of-the-century New York, Intimate Apparel tells the story of Esther, a lonely, single African-American woman who makes her living sewing beautiful corsets and ladies' undergarments. Seeking love and romance, Esther embarks on a letter-writing relationship with a mysterious suitor laboring on the Panama Canal, and realizes that only her self-reliance and certainty of her own worth will see her through life's challenges. The 2004 work received the Outer Critics Circle Award for Best Off-Broadway Play.

Intimate Apparel was developed as part of LCT and the Metropolitan Opera's Met/LCT New Works Program, a co-venture between the two institutions which is dedicated to developing new opera and music theater works. The venture has also produced Nico Muhly's Two Boys, with a libretto by Craig Lucas, as well as the upcoming Eurydice by Matthew Aucoin and Sarah Ruhl and Grounded by Jeanine Tesori and George Brant. Other writers working on productions include David T. Little and Royce Vavrek, and Joshua Schmidt and Dick Scanlan.

Casting and design team for Intimate Apparel will be announced.

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