The Mother of Us All | Stage Direction by R. B. Schlather | November 11, 12, 15, 18 & 19

The Mother of Us All | Stage Direction by R. B. Schlather | November 11, 12, 15, 18 & 19

The Mother of Us All (1947)
An opera by Virgil Thomson and Gertrude Stein

Stage Director                                  R. B. Schlather

Music Director                                 Tony Kieraldo
Set and Costume Designer          Marsha Ginsberg
Lighting Designer                           JAX Messenger
Dramaturg                                        Joan Retallack

Saturday, November 11, 4pm
Sunday, November 12, 4pm
Saturday, November 18, 4pm
Sunday,  November 19, 4pm
Tickets: $55 premium, $35 general admission

Wednesday, November 15, 4pm
Tickets: $45 premium, $25 general admission


To mark the centenary of the Women’s Suffrage Movement and the re-opening of New York State’s oldest surviving theater, Hudson Hall in partnership with The Millay Colony for the Arts has commissioned a new production of Virgil Thomson and Gertrude Stein’s rarely performed opera The Mother of Us All. Using real and imagined characters, The Mother of Us All is about Susan B. Anthony and the Women’s Suffrage Movement in America, which began in upstate New York.  Anthony spoke twice on the very stage where this opera will be performed.

The young and visionary stage director R. B. Schlather reimagines this two-act opera as a musical theater pageant, performed by a vocal and instrumental ensemble of Hudson Valley residents, and starring the mezzo-soprano Michaela Martens in the lead role. His team of collaborators include the renowned Stein scholar and John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Professor Emerita of Humanities at Bard College Joan Retallack. Together they are planning a series of public spectacles and salons in response to the building’s history as a space for civic exchange, and to provide essential commentary on who we are today as women, people of color, queers, activists, rural residents, and ultimately, individuals with the right to gather, voice our beliefs, and be represented with respect and equality–themes that are as relevant today as they were 100 years ago.

“His singers offer unafraid, impassioned performances that speak to Schlather’s ability to demolish the barriers of propriety and politeness that seem to plague much of traditional operatic experience.” – Opera Today

This production is a partnership with The Millay Colony for the Arts and has been made possible, in part, with support from the New York State Council on the Arts. 

Additional support provided by the Puffin West Foundation.

By arrangement with G. Schirmer, Inc., publisher and copyright owner.




Photo: Matthew Placek