Lazarus, a chancel opera

Children's and Liturgical Opera Company, LLC
www.chancelopera.com
LITURGICAL OPERA: The Raising of Lazarus
 
THE RAISING OF LAZARUS

a chancel opera interpreting John 2: 1-53
by Susan Hulsman Bingham

 

Raising of Lazarus, ivory carving, about 400 a.d.

 

CAST:

Messenger, John, Jesus, James, Peter, Andrew, Thomas, Martha, Mary, Lazarus; Caiaphus and Two Men; Various Male and Female Onlookers/Mourners/Villagers,

ACCOMPANIMENT:

piano or organ; flute optional

CHORUS:

small men's and women's choruses (acting)

DANCE:

none

PROPS:

minimal basic Biblical garb

SOURCE OF TEXTS:

based on John 2: 1-53

LANGUAGE:

English

MUSICAL STYLE:

light classical, melodic, harmonic

SCENES:

one

SOUND SAMPLE :
  Edward Getlein, baritone, as Jesus

DURATION:

twenty-five minutes

PREMIER:
  Trinity Church on the Green, New Haven, CT, 1979
 
SYNOPSIS

By a quiet hill on the edge of Judea, Jesus and his disciples Peter, James, Andrew, and Thomas are talking. A messenger arrives and announces that their friend Lazarus is ill. The disciples discuss whether or not Jesus should risk returning to Lazarus, since on a very recent visit, he was stoned by men who hated him.

The scene moves to the house of Mary and Martha, Lazarus’s sisters, as they anxiously await Jesus’s arrival;  then it switches back to the disciples, who fearfully join Jesus as he sets out for Bethany. . . . upon their safe arrival, the disciples are so relieved that they sing light-heartedly about miracles in general, showing their doubts as to some of what Jesus has done.

Once again, we look in on Mary and Martha, whose brother Lazarus has now died. The young messenger rushes in to announce Jesus’s arrival, and Martha immediately goes to meet him and reproach him for not coming sooner. Jesus, hearing wailing in the distance, becomes more and more moved by what has happened to Lazarus, and he listens with deep concern when Mary recounts Lazarus’s illness and death. When she, too, asks him why he did not come sooner, he asks, “Where have you laid him?”and weeps upon seeing the grave. After praying, Jesus cries out for Lazarus to come out of the tomb. He does -- bound from head to foot. “Unbind him and let him go,” commands Jesus. Lazarus’s face is unwrapped, and he moves off, leaving Jesus to his prayers and the onlookers to sing of their various ways of coping with this event.


Piano/vocal score of THE RAISING OF LAZARUS: $50. Price includes shipping within the US; it also includes performance rights and permission to make sufficient copies of the score for cast members and accompanists for one season.





Downloadable PDF file of musical score: $25.


CD of THE RAISING OF LAZARUS: $20. Price includes shipping within the US.

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