Silent Night
Composer: Kevin Puts
Composer Bio: Known for his rich and distinctive voice, Kevin Puts has been hailed by the critics as one of the most important composers of his generation. His work has been commissioned and performed by leading orchestras in the United States and abroad, including the New York Philharmonic, the Tonhalle Orchestër (Zurich), the symphony orchestras of Baltimore, Cincinnati, Detroit, Atlanta, Colorado, Houston, Fort Worth, Utah, St. Louis, the Boston Pops, and the Minnesota Orchestra which commissioned his Sinfonia Concertante, and by leading chamber ensembles such as the Mirò Quartet, the Eroica Trio, eighth blackbird, the Pittsburgh New Music Ensemble, and the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center.

Puts’ orchestral catalog includes four symphonies as well as several concertos written for some of today’s top soloists. In 2005, Mr. Puts received the tremendous honor of a commission in celebration of David Zinman’s 70th birthday, and the result was Vision, a cello concerto premiered by Yo-Yo Ma and the Aspen Music Festival Orchestra. During the same year, his Percussion Concerto was premiered by Evelyn Glennie with the Pacific and Utah Symphonies. He has also written concertos for marimbist Makoto Nakura, violinist Michael Shih, clarinetist Bil Jackson, and a piano concerto commissioned by the Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra and premiered in 2008 by pianist and conductor Jeffrey Kahane. Future projects include a work for chorus and orchestra for the Houston Symphony, and a large-scale opera based on the film Joyeux Nöel for Minnesota Opera, a chamber opera for eighth blackbird, and a work for Trio Solisti commissioned by Chamber Music Monterey Bay.

Puts has received awards and grants from the American Academy in Rome, the Guggenheim Foundation, the American Academy of Arts and Letters, BMI and ASCAP. He has served as composer-in-residence of Young Concerts Artists, the California Symphony, the Fort Worth Symphony, the Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra, and Bravo! Vail Valley Music Festival, Music from Angel Fire, and the Bach Dancing and Dynamite Society. He received his training as a composer and pianist at the Eastman School of Music and Yale University. Since 2006, he has been a member of the composition department at the Peabody Institute in Baltimore, Maryland.

A native of St. Louis, Missouri, Mr. Puts received his Bachelor’s Degree from the Eastman School of Music, his Master’s Degree from Yale University, and a Doctor of Musical Arts at the Eastman School of Music.
Librettist: Mark Campbell
Librettist Bio: Mark Campbell's credits are many and varied. His accomplishments include:
Opera: Volpone (Wolf Trap Opera, music by John Musto); Later The Same Evening (University of Maryland, National Gallery of Art, music by Musto); Bastianello/Lucrezia (New York Festival of Song, Weill Recital Hall, music by Musto and William Bolcom); The Inspector (Wolf Trap Opera, music by Musto); Rappahannock County (Virginia Opera, Virginia Arts Festival, University of Richmond and University of Texas, music by Ricky Ian Gordon). Musicals: Songs From An Unmade Bed (New York Theatre Workshop); The Audience (Transport Group); Splendora (American Place Theatre); Light Shall Lift Them (Brooklyn Academy of Music); Wheatley's Folly (DC’s Signature Theatre). Awards: a Grammy nomination, three Drama Desk Award nominations, two Richard Rodgers Awards from the American Academy of Arts and Letters, a New York Foundation for the Arts Playwriting Fellowship and the first recipient of the Kleban Foundation Award for Lyricist.
Other Artistic Personnel: Eric Simonson (Director)
Original Cast: William Burden (Nikolaus Sprink)
Andrew Wilkowske (Ponchel)
Craig Irvin (Lieutenant Horstmayer)
Liam Bonner (French Lieutenant Audebert)
Troy Cook (Father Palmer)
Work Web Site:
Premiere Date: November 12, 2011
Producing Company: Minnesota Opera
Description: On the Christmas Eve of 1914, in the Western Front in France in World War I, the Scottish, the German and the French troops have a moment of truce and share moments of peace and friendship. When the soprano, Anna Sørensen, succeeds in convincing the Prussian Prince to join her tenor husband, Nikolaus Sprink, to sing for the German high command, Sprink brings her to the front to sing for his comrades in the trench. The Scottis Lieutenant Gordon and the French Lieutenant Audebert have an informal and unauthorized meeting with the German Lieutenant Horstmayer and negotiate a truce for that night, and the priest Palmer celebrate a mass for the soldiers. When their superiors become aware of the event, they have to pay for the consequences of their acts.
Character List (Major): THE GERMAN SIDE
William Burden (Nikolaus Sprink)
Karin Wolverton (Anna Sørensen)
Craig Irvin (Lieutenant Horstmayer)
AJ Glueckert (Kronprinz)
John Robert Lindsey (Jonathan Dale)
Dustin Lucas (William Dale)
Troy Cook (Father Palmer)
Gabriel Preisser (Lieutenant Gordon)
Joseph Beutel (The British Major)
Liam Bonner (Lieutenant Audebert)
Andrew Wilkowske (Ponchel)
Ben Wager (The General)
Angela Mortellaro (Madeleine, Lt.)
Comments: Sung in English, German, French, Italian and Latin with English translations projected above the stage. A Minnesota Opera New Works Initiative production.
Length: Length is not available.
Total Acts: 2
Chorus: German, Scottish and French soldiers
Contact: Bill Murray
Address: 620 North First Street Minneapolis, MN 55401
E-mail Address:
Composer Web Site:
The Opera Fund Awardee Information
Award Category: 2008 Repertoire Development
Project Name: Silent Night
Awardee: Minnesota Opera, The
Director: Eric Simonson
Award Category: 2011 Repertoire Development
Project Name: Silent Night
Awardee: Minnesota Opera
Award Category: 2013 Robert L.B. Tobin Directo
Project Name: Silent Night
Awardee: George Cederquist
Director: George Cederquist
Designer: Set and Costume: Marianna Csaszar, Lighting Design
Schedule of Performances Listings
Silent Night (Puts)
Saturday, May 16, 2015 - Opéra de Montréal
Silent Night (Puts)
Saturday, February 21, 2015 - Lyric Opera of Kansas City
Silent Night (Puts)
Saturday, November 8, 2014 - Calgary Opera Association
Silent Night (Puts)
Thursday, July 10, 2014 - Cincinnati Opera
Silent Night (Puts)
Sunday, May 4, 2014 - Fort Worth Opera
Silent Night (Puts)
Friday, February 8, 2013 - Opera Philadelphia
Silent Night (Puts)
Saturday, November 12, 2011 - Minnesota Opera
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