SFOpera - ‘Steve Jobs’ reigns supreme at the 2019 Grammys

‘Steve Jobs’ reigns supreme at the 2019 Grammys

Our co-production The (R)evolution of Steve Jobs won big at the 2019 Grammys. It nabbed top honors in the Best Opera Recording category, beating heavyweight contenders like John Adams’ Doctor Atomic and the Metropolitan Opera’s recording of Der Rosenkavalier.

The recording, made in conjunction with the opera’s world premiere at Santa Fe Opera, is a perfect showcase for composer Mason Bates' cutting-edge style.

His music blends the classic beauty of opera with the edginess of electronica—a sound Bates embraced during his time as a Bay Area nightclub DJ.

In The (R)evolution of Steve Jobs, Bates' first opera, he and librettist Mark Campbell set out to create an opera uniquely suited to its complicated subject matter: 21st-century icon Steve Jobs.

“If we’re going to take on Steve Jobs and Apple, we want to do something that is worthy of his design,” Campbell said at the Guggenheim Museum, in an interview about the opera’s origins. To reflect Jobs’ pared-down, modern aesthetic, they opted to tell a non-linear story, with each character inhabiting a different “sound world.”

Jobs’ “sound world,” for instance, is tinged with quicksilver electronica, while his mentor Kōbun Chino Otogawa is accompanied by a more ethereal sound.

Did Bates and Campbell succeed in capturing Jobs’ legacy? It appears Recording Academy voters thought so—a fact Bates and Campbell can measure in Grammy gold. Decide for yourself when The (R)evolution of Steve Jobs arrives here in summer 2020! Subscribe now to reserve a seat.

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