June 2013
George Gershwin's

Blue Monday

The Cotton Club

Thirteen years before George Gershwin wrote his landmark opera Porgy and Bess, he wrote a one-act opera that fused Italian opera with a truly American style. The result was Blue Monday.  This 30-minute jazz opera tells the story of a love triangle gone wrong against the backdrop of a 1920s Harlem jazz club. On Site Opera’s Blue Monday was conceived for site-specific performances at Harlem’s legendary Cotton Club in the summer of 2013. Each evening of the sold-out run, the doors opened an hour before the opera for cocktails and dancing accompanied by a live band.

The production was choreographed by Tony Award-winning choreographer, George Faison, and featured the Cotton Club All Stars band.

Blue Monday was a co-production with

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  • Rameau’s “Pygmalion” will be staged in June by On Site Opera, one of New York’s most original and enterprising companies. Once they choose an opera, they then select the ideal place to perform it. I very much enjoyed their Blue Monday by George Gershwin at the Cotton Club in Harlem.

    WQXR's Operavore
  • This new production, presented by the innovative On Site Opera company and the Harlem Opera Theater, was performed at the legendary Cotton Club in Harlem where old-time jazzmen teamed up with an African- American cast of singers and dancers.

    BBC News
  • When the Met closes shop and the spring rains arrive, little New York opera companies pop up like mushrooms, some delicious, some deadly. Of their recent presentations, the most piquant was a collaboration between the newish On Site Opera…

    Opera Magazine
  • The intimacy of the club and the immediacy of the drama created a truly riveting spectacle that brought the rare work to vibrant life.

    Latinos Post
  • Dancers choreographed by George Faison enhanced a seductive production staged by Eric Einhorn, On Site Opera’s artistic director, and attractively costumed by Candida K. Nichols.

    The New York Times
  • This is a quick, thrilling ride in a time machine, and effective use of a performance space to create atmosphere and mood…another excellent argument for freeing opera from the constraints of the auditorium.

    Super Conductor

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