Oratorio Society of New York presents the world premiere of A NATION OF OTHERS, an oratorio about immigration and Ellis Island, with a libretto by Mark Campbell, at Carnegie Hall, November 15, 2022.
This powerful new work follows the individual stories of immigrants as they pass through Ellis Island on a single day in 1921: Tomasso (Caltagirone, Sicily) seeks a better life for his family away from the poverty of his country; Connor (Tralee, Ireland) escapes the Blacks and Tans who terrorized his hometown. Mr. and Mrs. Nowak (Przemyśl, Poland), an elderly couple, flee the effects of World War I. A boy from Zagreb, Croatia has a bad foot, and his mother Mirjana puts a stone in his shoe to help him pass the health inspection. Masha (Proskurov, Ukraine) escapes the pogroms of her hometown but not the memory of them. Karin (Kvarnberg, Sweden) coaches her two daughters, on the interview process. And finally, in the Ellis Island hospital, Aram (Trabzon, Turkey), wonders how he eluded genocide in his homeland, only to get stricken with tuberculosis before reaching the U.S.
All of these stories act as a reminder that our country is greater, stronger, better—and more unsinkable—because of its heterogeneity.
Kent Tritle leads the chorus and orchestra of the Oratorio Society of New York with an all-star cast of soloists: Susanna Phillips, Soprano, Maeve Höglund, Soprano, Raehann Bryce-Davis, mezzo soprano, Martin Bakari, Tenor, Steven Eddy, baritone, and Joseph Charles Beutel, Bass-Baritone.l