The Roswell Incident


Opera: Child, soprano, tenor and bass-baritone soloists, piano, 4 strings, 4 toms and pre-recorded sounds
94 minutes
Libretto by Heledd Wyn.

Commissioned by Music Theatre Wales and Eastern Touring Agency. First performed 9/05/97 at Theatre Royal, Bury St Edmunds by Music Theatre Wales.

The Roswell Incident explores the effects of the famous alleged crash in the New Mexico wilderness of an unidentified flying object in 1947, and the mythology and speculation which have surrounded the event.

Music Theatre Wales artistic director Michael McCarthy described it as "a fascinating story with strong human and emotional undercurrents... an intriguing new music-theatre piece... a cinematic piece in which image, music and message blend together."

Scored for child singer, soprano, tenor and baritone with string quartet, piano, percussion and electro-acoustic soundworld, the libretto is by Heledd Wyn.


“A powerful new opera”
Duncan Hadfield, The Independent, 3-9 May 1997

“Hardy’s approachable score… ranges from Brittenesque nerviness… to New Age, neo-minimalist lyricism.”
Rodney Miles, The Times, 13 May 1997

“Cunningly crafted… score.”
Christopher Morley, The Birmingham Post, 31 May 97

“Hardy’s fretful, quick-fire exchanges…
are witty… the vocal pointillism clicks… the odd instrumental touch (eerie, zither-like keyboard, a three-second glisten of violin harmonics) makes appealing subliminal contributions. 
The focal character… seems to stand outside normal time and space… [seeming] to be an unnerving liberated reflection of ourselves… Hardy gives this young slyph recitatives ranging from minor thirds… to quite supple, intricate vocal cat’s cradles and octave pirouettes.”

Roderic Dunnett, The Independent, 3 June 97

“A remarkable topical opera… both modern and approachable, outré and understandable… [the] audience… were captivated and enthralled.”
Michael Courtney Soper, Contact International UK, 9 June 97

“Anothernotable success [for Music Theatre Wales.]”
Jon Holliday, The Stage, 3 July 97

“The piece deserves further life.”
Rodney Miles, Opera, August 1997

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