Giver of Light

GLORIOUSLY WEIRD AND SONICALLY RICHOPERA AT ITS MOST TRANSPORTINGA LOT TO LIKE: Roberts’s busy, burbling music, his clarity with vocal writing, his flexibility in changing his text setting to match the drama… Tláloc López-Watermann’s lighting was both SPLASHY AND EVOCATIVE… The quartet of singers was EXCELLENT…”
(New Music Box)

“… ATTRACTIVELY KINETIC score … VIBRANT… Guerilla Opera as a company (Rudolf Rojahn and Mike Williams, artistic directors) seemed to be exactly where it should be: bringing a FRESHLY AMBITIOUS new chamber opera into the world with PLUCK AND STYLE.
(The Boston Globe)

“… a POWERFUL success… amazingly LUSH score… the production is FIRST-RATE… rates high in Guerilla Opera’s growing list of IMPORTANT PRODUCTIONS.”
(The Boston Musical Intelligencer)

“… an attractive mix of the familiar and EXOTICOTHERWORLDLYINVENTIVE staging…”
(Boston Classical Review)

“One need not be an opera aficionado or Rumi scholar to appreciate what they’re doing here. It’s CREATIVE, PASSIONATE, SKILLED, and TRANSFORMING, which is all opera ever has or should be.”
(North Shore Art Throb)

A chamber opera in two acts based on the life of Rumi
Music & Libretto by Adam Roberts
Directed by Andrew Eggert

Premiere: May 23, 2013 (5 performances)
Location: The Zack Box at The Boston Conservatory (Boston, MA)

This drama is inspired by the real life events of the 13th-century Sufi mystic poet, Rumi, whose life was forever changed after an encounter with the wandering mystic, the Shams of Tabriz. When Shams disappeared, Rumi spiraled into a deep sorrow, giving birth to much of the poetry we know today. Roberts’ reimagination of this story in the present-day American Midwest breaks down and explores our various assumptions about what love is, who it can be between and how intimately linked it is to sexuality.

The opera follows John, a successful and socially conscious family man who seemingly has it all, but is troubled by a nagging emptiness that gnaws at his soul. When John encounters a mystic—who is also his son’s school bus driver—his world is turned upside down and he pursues a friendship. But soon enough, John’s wife grows suspicious of his relationship and sets off a series of events that question the mystic’s integrity and forces John to make a decision that could forever change his life.

ENSEMBLE (** indicates Guerilla Opera company members)
Jonas Budris, tenor (John)
Aliana de la Guardia, soprano (Elena/Mean Kid)**
Brian Church, baritone (Darren)
Jennifer Ashe, soprano (Susan/Brian)
Amy Advocat, clarinets
Kent O’Doherty, saxophones **
Mike Williams, percussion **
Javier Caballero, cello
Rudolf Rojahn, electronics **

Music and Libretto, Adam Roberts
Stage Director, Andrew Eggert
Electronics Composer, Anil Çamci
Scenic Designer, Julia Noulin-Merat **
Lighting Designer, Tláloc López-Watermann **
Costume Design, Neil Fortin
Assistant Director, Giselle Ty
Stage Manager, Nicole Angell
Props Designer, Anita Shriver
Technical Director, Mark DiGiovanni
Assistant Scenic Design, Liz Sherrier
Assistant Stage Manager, Keithlyn Parkman
Assistant Costume Designer, Callan Bideau
Rehearsal Pianist, Tae Kim
Graphic Designer, Holly Gordon


We want to thank our supporters beyond Boston for always pushing us to reach out and for making our first livestream a success. We would especially like to thank The Boston Conservatory A/V Department for providing top-notch video and sound, The Rumi Project for helping us get the word out through their impressive social media resources and the Vancouver Rumi Society whose members gathered for their own Giver of Light viewing party!

For information on how to bring Guerilla Opera productions to your community please contact Aliana de la Guardia at or call 866-615-2723 Ext. 3.