Orpheus and Eurydice:
A Picnic Operetta
In a unique marriage of the theatrical arts and the sustainable foods movement, Mixed Precipitation presented Orpheus and Eurydice, our first picnic operetta touring community garden spaces during the 2009 harvest season.
Our opera was based on the Greek myth chronically Orpheus’ journey to the underworld to retrieve his love, Eurydice. This production was a mix of mythology, romance and adventure within the beauty of community garden spaces. We devised a version of the myth using the music of Claudio Monteverdi, Christoph Willibald Gluck, Jacques Offenbach and a bit of Motown! Our story was told in French, Italian and English—and the universal language of food.
As our tradition took shape we developed a “hybridized” form, using dance, music and locally sourced food samplings to translate the events of the opera. We strive toward an integrated vision of urban ecology and the arts as we fuse the creative arts of dance, music, and theatre with the creative arts of farming, gardening, cooking and serving.
We presented Orpheus and Eurydice: A Picnic Operetta in ten community garden sites in August and September 2009, including sites in St. Louis Park, Minneapolis and St. Paul.
An interview with Scotty Reynolds and Chef Nick Schneider from local food blog, Heavy Table.
A review from the Vegetarian Perspective.
Our production would not have been possible without the financial support of the Irwin Andrew Porter Foundation.
We are also grateful for the partnership of our fiscal agent, the Interact Center for Visual and Performing Arts.
Additional thanks to the Bedlam Theatre, Gardening Matters, Gardens of Eagan and the Wedge-Coop and to each of our host gardens!
Also to Laura Grant, Sara Testen, Brian Noy, Cathy Schacher, Dhann Polnau, Doris Wickstrom, Jennifer Tacheny, Jeffry Lusiak, Ila Duntemann, Peat Willcutt, Dan Noyes and Adam Jonas of Vesper College, Adam Jonas, Danielle Fehring, Cherry Flowers of Urban Farming, Seth Schlotterbeck or Gardens of Eagan and the Mill City Farmer’s Market, Soozin Herschmugl, Val Barnes, Ty Sassaman, Heather Spear, Steve Norquist and Madde Gibba