» News and Updates Evenings in Quarantine: The Zombie Opera

Archive for the ‘News and Updates’ Category

 BREAKING NEWS  January 2, 2019

“Engaging Fandoms” at MAGfest

We are excited to have Zombie Opera Artistic Directors/Co-Creators Bonnie Bogovich, Liz Rishel, and ‘zombie safety’ cartoonist Marjorie Rishel, presenting “Engaging Fandoms:  Crafting Stories for an Established Audiences” at Super MAGFest 2019 this Friday, Jan 4th in National Harbor, MD.  They will dive into the creative process, and lessons learned, from writing operas and musicals based on existing themes, fandoms, & more!

 BREAKING NEWS  August 9, 2017

Undead make a comeback with Dracula


Bonnie and Liz have teamed up once more along with Zombie Opera’s Rock Bottom liason, Gwen Schmidt, and fellow musicians Sean Lenhart, and Judy Kirby to awaken a new undead project.  Not zombies, this time, but vampires!  The team are producing a new podcast radio play version on Bram Stoker’s beloved Gothic Victorian masterpiece, Dracula.  This radio play features a full cast of characters, sound effects, and spooky music to set the tone of the drama.  To complete the experience, each episode of this novel is released on the date that each character chronicles the happenings, so the listener may feel the passage of time as the story unfolds.

Read the rest of this entry ?

 BREAKING NEWS  January 26, 2017

Song Cycle – History of Video Games

Screen Shot 2017-01-26 at 2.39.02 PMMore operatic happenings from members of our Zombie Opera team, Bonnie Bogovich collaborated on a recent album by Materia Collective, “Song Cycle: History of Video Games”. This special recording project features reimaginations of classic video game melodies “through game history” arranged for ‘recital-stylized’ voice and piano (with sheet music available as well!)

Bonnie worked on the melodies and lyrics three tracks:

  • “Home” from Fez – piano by Joel Everett, vocals by Laura Intravia
  • “Cohen’s Masterpiece” from Bioshock – piano by Joel Everett, vocals by John Robert Matz
  • “What a Deal on this Plot” based on “Grasswalk” from Plants versus Zombies – piano by Ben Wallace and vocals by Doug Perry

Materia Collective’s “SONG CYCLE: The History of Video Games”

 BREAKING NEWS  October 6, 2016

Remembering Sam Nicotero

nicotero1006-joe-nicotero-obituaryToday, we salute and bid farewell to Sam Nicotero, who passed away on Monday, October 2nd. Sam was our original stage zombie in the debut of Evenings in Quarantine: The Zombie Opera, in 2010. Sam had an impressive history of working with horror projects, both film and stage, and was a great asset to Pittsburgh. We know his passing will be felt by the community as a whole. Witty, funny, and very engaged in his involvement, we will miss you, Sam.

Samuel Nicotero (July 6, 1941 – Oct. 3, 2016)
“North Side actor cultivated creativity in his family” – Pittsburgh Post Gazette

 BREAKING NEWS  July 31, 2016

Angela lives again… as a Princess!

13726672_638696191538_3743921793879745616_nEmily Swora, who originated the Zombie Opera role “Angela: the party girl” will be performing the role of ‘Princess Peach’ in “Laser Eyes: The Mario Opera” an original musical about Nintendo’s Mario. The performance will be followed by a ballet with a Terminator 2 theme. Should be quite an exciting evening for many fanbases! Get tickets and learn more here

 BREAKING NEWS  May 25, 2016

Old opera with a new taste for Blood!

DG1Zombie Opera creators Bonnie Bogovich and Liz Rishel joined forces with Gwen Schmidt, Michael Greenstein and Mary Beth Sederburg to conceptualize a new angle for Mozart’s Don Giovanni in celebration of Undercroft Opera’s ten-year anniversary. Sederburg asked the ubiquitous duo to help her realize her dream- to merge Don Giovanni with Bram Stoker’s Dracula.

Ambitious though it was to re-write the the words to the entire opera, Bogovich and Rishel have a vested interested in its outcome- to make opera more accessible to audiences, and to give people a high-quality artistic product that they will love! As an added bonus, both Zombie Opera creators adore the 1897 classic novel, and Rishel even led a group of readers in “The Dracula Challenge”, an endeavor to read the novel in real time last year, each novel entry on the date it was written in the book. And of course, both Bogovich and Rishel are partial to opera with a little gore, especially when combined with a thematic projected backdrop. Read the rest of this entry ?

 BREAKING NEWS  May 14, 2016

Steam The Opera

Zombie Opera Co-creator Liz Rishel has just launched the Kickstarter for her new project, Steam ~ or ~ The Specters of the Knox Mill. The project is a steampunk rock opera ghost story that will be filmed as a movie and released online, and set in Industrial Revolution Pittsburgh. Jordan Speranzo, who played “Aidan” in the Zombie Opera is a core member of the band and Bonnie Bogovich, the other half of the Zombie-Opera-creating-duo, will be featured on the singing board of directors, as well as helping with production and sound design backstage. If you came to the Zombie Opera Five-Year Anniversary Party at Mr. Smalls last October, you may have caught the debut live performance of this project, as they played their first teaser song, “The Pitch.”

Check out their Kickstarter campaign to see how you can help this new project!

 BREAKING NEWS  February 17, 2016

MAGfest, Steampunk, and some Squawking!

Lots of great things happening on the musical wave that Zombie Opera’s Artistic Directors Bonnie and Liz are riding! Their new project, Super Smash Opera has been chosen as a MAGfest Special Event this year, and will be performed on Friday, Feb 19th at 1 pm in Panels 1. Later that same day, they have a Q&A in Panels 4 at 8:30. They are thrilled to be special guests, and plan to reward everyone’s confidence with fun new postcards, new puppets, props, and a full live orchestra and choir! They can’t wait to share the updates with the good people at MAGfest in National Harbor MD. If you can’t attend MAGfest this year, (and you totally should, because it’s amazing fun,) fret not- the administration usually posts their popular panels on YouTube after the convention.

In other news, Liz and her band of Steampunk opera singers is getting ready to launch a kickstarter for their new project, Steam ~ or ~ The Specters of the Knox Mill, another work in their continuing mission to invigorate the opera scene with fun, new material designed for a modern audience. Please stay tuned to learn how you can help contribute to the production of this internet-streaming mini-series.

Bonnie and Liz are also proud to announce the launch of the new Materia Collective Album sequel entitled Successor Final Fantasy VIII Remixed. Both performed on the album, and they continue their trend of combining Final Fantasy with gratuitous bird noises. It’s an extended-length album, the compiled works of several different composers, and is an excellent value for the price. We suggest you check it out if Final Fantasy music appeals to you.

Celebrations and anticipation, it’s a wonderful time to enjoy this new musical renaissance!

 BREAKING NEWS  January 15, 2016

Beautiful Cadaver Zombie Potluck Fundraiser

There will be a Zombie Potluck on Saturday, January 30th at 2 pm to benefit Beautiful Cadaver Project Pittsburgh, surrealist theater company that focuses on showcasing local playwrights and experimental collaborations. This project is the recipient of an Arts MODE fellowship from The Zombie Opera’s own fiscal sponsor, New Sun Rising.

The event will include:
Chinese raffle,
Intuitive readings by Michelle Handa of Castle Blood,
Meet and greet with the project creators,
Sneak peak of the upcoming season,
….and a costume contest judged by Evenings in Quarantine: The Zombie Opera’s own Bonnie Bogovich and Liz Rishel.

Come support some fresh new corpses as they expand Pittsburgh’s arts community and embrace our undying love for the living dead!

220 North Ave, Pittsburgh PA 15209
2 – 5 pm

Suggested Donation:
$10 – $15
$5 – $10 if bringing a covered dish
$5 children and students

For more info, see their Facebook event!

 BREAKING NEWS  October 4, 2015

Five Year Anniversary Fun!

11147121_10153609523869675_9099055512937328139_nWe were overjoyed by the effusive response we received last night at our Five-Year Anniversary Party at Mr. Smalls theater! It was a delight to see so many familiar faces, recounting so many memories, and welcoming new audiences young and old! It is nothing short of heart-warming to hear stories of the ripples created by our strange little project, and it was enchanting to see the amazing new cut of the Fall 2011 DVD edited by Chris Galgon (http://www.chrisemilyvideo.com/). For those interested, please stay tuned for pre-order information!

We are eternally grateful to the staff at Mr. Smalls, particularly Shaunden and Sabrina, who made the evening run so splendidly, and to Liz and Mike for hosting us. We also want to recognize Bob Miller, Emily Swora, and Jordan Speranzo, and David Egyud who joined us on stage to perform a few Zombie Opera favorites. Another special thanks to Marjorie Rishel, Matt Kucic, Marylou Lenhart, and Jim Newsome, who forewent unencumbered revelry to help us run the production part of the event.

Another delightful surprise was the response we received to the introduction of new and recent projects, including two world premieres.

  • “Waltz de Chocobo, featuring the Bwack Choir” is a piece arranged by Bonnie Bogovich for the fan cover album entitled Materia: Final Fantasy VII Remixed, which will be released and available for download on Friday, October 9th. The album is comprised of conceptual arrangements of Final Fantasy VII music that range in style, tone, and instrumentation, chosen by and tailored to the strengths and interests of each composer.
  • “The Fireflower Duet,” performed by Liz and Bonnie, is a parody of Lakmé’s famous Sous le dôme épais, re-lyricized as a duet between Link and Zelda (disguised as Sheik) for the new project, Super Smash Opera. The show features an original plot featuring the cast of the Super Smash Brothers games, and is set to the music of Opera’s most famously recognizable tunes.
  • “The Pitch,” performed by Liz Rishel, Jordan Speranzo (both Zombie Opera Alums), Sean Lenhart, and William Strom, was written for a new project entitled Steam ~ or ~ The Specters of the Knox Mill, which is a steampunk ghost story set in Industrial Revolution Pittsburgh. The project is currently in production, and is promoting its upcoming fundraiser on November 20, the Steampunk Ball and Fashion Cotillion, also at Mr. Smalls Theater.

A joyous night for all, we are grateful to everyone who came out to help make this event special!