Profiles in Psychotherapy and the Arts

Mini Opera Ororborium Explores Evolution of Human Consciousness

Terry Marks-Tarlow, PhD, collaborated with composer Jonathan Dawe on a mini opera.

By Terry Marks-Tarlow, PhD

Terry Marks-Tarlow, PhD, collaborated with composer Jonathan Dawe on a mini opera Ororborium, premiering in April 2018 in Lincoln Center, performed by the New Julliard Ensemble.

Synopsis

Oroborium operaBefore Dylan Thomas's untimely death, he and Igor Stravinsky planned to create an opera. They envisioned a tale about a cataclysmic event that destroys the Earth. Only two Earthlings or aliens remain; they re-invent language, and language brings the world back into being.

Oroborium completes this unfinished collaboration. Their interpretation is a creation myth that serves as much an inner tale as an outer one about the evolution of human consciousness. The word "oroborium" derives from the uroboros, the mythological snake that eats its own tale/tail, symbol of self-creation and renewal. 

After the cataclysm, the drama begins with two young children who are isolated and gripped by rage and fear. Only by connecting and comforting one another can they move through developmental stages of curiosity and play before enduring separation and grief so that they may reconnect through the highest human emotional states of awe and love.

The performance took place on April 28, 2018, at 7:30 pm ET at Alice Tully Hall, 1941 Broadway, New York, NY 10023.