by Igor Stravinsky • April 30; May 3, 6, 8, 2016

Pittsburgh Opera concludes its 77th season with the Pittsburgh premiere of the David Hockney production of Stravinsky’s THE RAKE’S PROGRESS.

The plot follows Tom Rakewell, who squanders his large inheritance on women, drinking and gambling.

  • Tom’s journey from fortunate heir, to gambler, to inmate at Bedlam is based on a famous series of engravings by William Hogarth from 1732.
  • The opera itself is by Igor Stravinsky, who was inspired by Hogarth’s engravings. It premiered in 1951.
  • The libretto was written by poets W. H. Auden and Chester Kallman.
  • Pittsburgh Opera is performing the David Hockney production, with jaw-dropping sets, props, wigs and costumes designed by “the most influential British artist of all time”. Hockney mimics the feel of Hogarth’s original engravings, using black cross hatching and the three colors printers used in Hogarth’s time: red, blue and green.

The performances are essentially a living David Hockney art installation set to Stravinsky’s beautiful neo-classical music. For an overview of what this means, please see Glyndebourne’s YouTube video “The Rake's Progress: An Introduction” below, which includes an interview with David Hockney.

► See Pittsburgh Opera's videos of our full dress rehearsal below, in the "Video excerpts" section of this webpage.

• Sung in the original English with projected English titles
• All performances at the Benedum Center

Anne Trulove and Tom Rakewell sing of their love and happiness. Photo via David Bachman Photography.

Mother Goose and her ‘employees’ await Tom in her brothel. Photo via David Bachman Photography.

“I’m not going to be ignored.” Baba the Turk in a newlywed spat with Tom. Photo via David Bachman Photography.

Baba the Turk finds herself up for auction. Photo via David Bachman Photography.

Tom and Nick Shadow play a game of cards with Tom’s soul as the prize. Photo via David Bachman Photography.

Soul intact but now gone mad, Tom waits for Venus to visit him in the insane asylum. Photo via David Bachman Photography.

Video excerpts

Previews and Reviews

Cast and Creative Team


Details and Resources

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