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Film screening: Michael Hersch’s "Poppaea": an opera in one act

"Poppaea" (run time ca. 110') is a 21st-century inquiry into the brilliant, dynamic woman who became Nero's empress. The film takes a hard look at cruelty, desire, humanity, and love in the context of the machinations of power endemic to Nero's reign. "Poppaea" conjures a dark world in which violence-in particular, violence against women-is rampant, and the value of human life has been demeaned beyond measure. And yet Poppaea's journey might be described as a complex movement towards empathy.. Music by Michael Hersch, libretto by Stephanie Fleischmann.

"Poppaea" premiered September 10 and 12, 2021 - ZeitRäume Basel - Biennial for New Music and Architecture and November 5-7, 2021 - Wien Modern Festival, Vienna, Austria.

Free admission.

Post-screening discussion with composer Michael Hersch, soprano Ah Young Hong, and Duke professors Lauren Ginsberg (Classical Studies), Roseen Giles (Music) and John Supko (Music).

This screening is presented by the Departments of Music and Classical Studies, the John Hope Franklin Humanities Institute, and Duke Arts.

Contact: Duke Music