Frankfurt-based production company Exsultate Project is partnering with streaming platform Helio Arts to release Obscura Nox, a bold retelling of Plato’s Allegory of the Cave.
Created by acclaimed Canadian mezzo-soprano Julia Dawson, this 26-minute “création lyrique” features Mozart’s Exsultate, Jubilate (KV 165) and new music by Iranian-Canadian composer Iman Habibi with original Latin text. The production fuses classical music with narrative film, exploring themes of isolation, the relationship between perception and reality, and society’s morphine-drip addiction to our screen.
“The human mind has an incredible ability to craft its own experience,” says Dawson. “I wanted to create a fantastical exploration of someone moving from an external focus on screens and media to an inward focus and how, paradoxically, this allows them to engage more fully with the outside world.”
Obscura Nox is the result of a trans-Atlantic collaboration between New York director Mary Birnbaum, Atlanta Ballet’s choreographer-in-residence Claudia Schreier and a Frankfurt-based cast, orchestra and crew.
The production features dancer Evie Poaros, and was captured by director of photography Thilo Jäger. Violinist Guillaume Faraut leads the chamber ensemble, which includes musicians from the Frankfurter Opern- und Museumsorchester, the Deutsche Radio Philharmonie Saarbrücken, the Staatstheater Darmstadt, and the Bayreuth Festival Orchestra.
Obscura Nox is now available for streaming on HelioArts.com, watch it here.