April 21, 1937
The Second Hurricane
Composer:Aaron Copland
Librettist:Edwin Denby
Synopsis
There has been a hurricane and a flood. An aviator comes to a high school to ask students to be volunteers on a rescue mission. On the way to the disaster area the plane develops engine trouble and is forced to land in a desolate stretch of country near a flood-swollen river. The students are told to unload the supplies and carry them to the top of a nearby hill where they will be safe from the flood waters. The pilot then returns to repair his plane. Left alone, the young people quarrel over who is to assume the leadership of their group. A small boy, Jeff, wanders in lost and hungry. One of the girls gives him some food from their store of food and thereby antagonizes the others, who feel that she had no right to distribute the supplies before having made contact with the disaster victims. In the midst of these bickerings, a second hurricane strikes. For a while, the young people are in serious danger. The storm passes, leaving them frightened but unharmed. Their narrow escape from death gives them an insight into the pettiness and unimportance of their quarrels. By the time the pilot returns, they have come to learn that cooperation and unselfishness are synonymous with happiness and freedom.

Productions
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COMPANYTITLEDATES
Sarasota OperaThe Second Hurricane5/5/2001 - 5/20/2001


Title Information

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Approximate Runtime (hh:mm)
00:53

Number of Acts
2

Musical Style
Colorful orchestration; contemporary harmonies; use of continuous melody; some jazz influence

Vocal & Musical Forces
2 Sopranos, Contralto, 2 Tenors, Baritone, Bass; 3 Adult Speakers; Mixed Chorus

Original Cast
Original Cast: Joseph Cotton, Virgil Thomson. 1985 revival cast: Lia Alexi, Kevin Goetz, Nancy Hume, Mark Leinthall, Gary Rosenblatt, Crist Swann, Barbara Wilder and Roland LaRoy Wright


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