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As One


November 1, 2019
November 2, 2019
November 3, 2019


Pensacola Little Theatre


English with English Supertitles


Laura Kaminsky


Mark Campbell & Kimberly Reed


In partnership with Sunday’s Child, Pensacola Opera presents a unique multimedia double feature.

A transformative journey of self-discovery, As One tells the story of Hannah as she realizes and uncovers her true self. With evocative music by Laura Kaminsky and a stirring libretto by Mark Campbell and Kimberly Reed, As One has quickly become the most performed new work in North America. This Florida premiere production features Elise Quagliata and Robert Wesley Mason as Hannah, along with the Polymnia String Quartet conducted by Cody Martin. 

Performances of As One will be preceded by a showing of Kimberly Reed’s autobiographical documentary Prodigal Sons. In this film, Kimberly attends her twenty-year high school reunion ready to reintroduce herself to the small Montana town as a transgender woman. Exploring questions of sexual orientation, identity, severe trauma and love, the candid, sometimes bruising footage takes a tender but unflinching look at identity and the past, examining what it means to become someone new.

Cast and Creatives

Robert Wesley Mason*

as Hannah Before

Hailed as a “gifted and fiercely committed baritone whose voice is spacious and reverberant,” (Opera News) Robert Wesley Mason has established themselves as one of today’s most versatile performers, employing “his mighty baritone to stunning effect, using interpretive phrasing and nuanced delivery” (Albany Times Union). In their teenage years, inspired by rock vocalists like Chris Cornell and Jeff Buckley, Wes sang in local bands and played solo in coffee houses in his hometown of Norfolk, Virginia. Voice lessons led to a passion for opera and new music that continues to this day.”

An acclaimed interpreter of contemporary works as well as the inherited repertoire, Wes has performed more than 50 unique operatic roles. Highlights include Hannah Before in As One with
Pensacola Opera, Eugene Opera, and the Lyric Opera of Kansas City, Jan Nyman in Breaking the Waves with West Edge Opera, Stanley Kowalski in A Streetcar Named Desire with Kentucky Opera, Father Flynn in Doubt with Union Avenue Opera, Jonathan in Siren Song with Hawaii Opera Theatre, Dax/Larry in the world premiere of Paterson and Cote’s Three Way with Nashville Opera and American Opera Project, Charlie in Three Decembers and Ping in Turandot with Nashville Opera, the title role in Hamlet with Fort Worth Opera, the title role in Guillaume Tell with the Southern Illinois Music Festival, Reinaldo Arenas in the world premiere of Martín and Koch’s Before Night Falls with Fort Worth Opera, Belcore in L’elisir d’amore with Gulfshore Opera, Masetto in Don Giovanni with Opera Philadelphia and Opera Naples, Achilla in Giulio Cesare with Opera Roanoke, Escamillo in Carmen with Fargo-Moorhead Opera, Escamillo in La Tragédie de Carmen with Syracuse Opera, Marcello in La bohème with Hawaii Opera Theatre, Fort Worth Opera, and Norwalk Symphony, Schaunard in La bohème with the Crested Butte Music Festival, Zurga in Les pêcheurs de perles with Opera Delaware and Baltimore Concert Opera, the baritone soloist in Broadway Extravaganza with Opera Hong Kong, Sciarrone in Tosca with Dallas Opera, and Morales in Carmen with the Glimmerglass Festival and Michigan Opera Theater.

Artist Website >>

Elise Quagliata

as Hannah After

Grammy nominated mezzo-soprano ELISE QUAGLIATA has forged a dynamic career over the past twenty years, sought after for the beauty of her voice, her dramatic range and the charismatic hold she has on audiences everywhere. Well-known for shaping roles in new and contemporary opera, she has also been acclaimed for her performance of traditional works.

The artist’s previous seasons featured over 70 performances of Carmen for New York City Opera on tour in Europe, North America, Asia and the Middle East; on her return, she sang the role for summer audiences at New York City’s Bryant Park. This past season, her performance of Carmen with Pensacola Opera was one of the first operas to be seen in the country as the pandemic lockdown began to lift. The artist’s Carmen has been widely praised, “Quagliata’s dusky mezzo, dramatic acumen and pulchritude commanded attention” (Opera News).

Performances of new works, recent and upcoming, include an ensemble recording of Luna Pearl Woolf’s Fire and Flood, which earned a 2021 Grammy nomination.  In July of 2022, Ms. Quagliata will premiere and be featured in Kristin Kuster’s A Thousand Acres in the leading role of Ginny.  Based on the Pulitzer Prize winning book by Jane Smiley, with a libretto by Mark Campbell, the work has been commissioned by Des Moines Metro Opera to mark their fiftieth anniversary.  In an upcoming season, she will premiere Paolo Prestini’s Edward Tulane, singing Pellegrina and the Older Doll, with Minnesota Opera.

Artist Website >>


Polymnia Quartet*

as String Quartet
string quartet

The Polymnia Quartet (Benjamin Hart and Kate Withrow, violins; Amelia Clingman, viola; Philip Von Maltzahn, cello) was founded in 2015 in New Orleans with a focus on presenting classical standards and contemporary compositions in atypical venues, offering audiences fresh ways to experience chamber music. The Quartet performs regularly at the Marigny Opera House and for the Marigny Opera Ballet. Locally, they have performed at Southern Rep Theatre, Nola Brewing Company, Tulane University, and at the Audubon Park “Music Under the Oaks” series. In 2018, the Quartet commissioned and premiered a new collaborative work at the Music Box Village.

The Polymnia Quartet has performed for New Orleans Opera Association’s productions of María de Buenos Aires and As One, which they also performed with Des Moines Metro Opera. Educational collaborations have included masterclasses for the Birdfoot Festival in New Orleans and a side-by-side with the Magnolia Concert Society Chamber Orchestra in Gulfport, MS. They currently serve as Ensemble-in-Residence for the New Orleans Friends of Music’s Open Your Ears educational initiative.

The name “Polymnia” refers to the Greek Muse of hymns and poetry and is a nod to both New Orleans’ Polymnia Street and the celebrated Mardi Gras Krewe of Muses.

Cody Martin

as Conductor

American conductor Cody Martin was recently named Music Director at Pensacola Opera, where he was previously the Director of Education and Director of the Artists in Residence Program since 2017.  During the 2023-24 season, he leads a production of Lucia di Lammermoor and serves as associate conductor and chorus director for Die Fledermaus, in addition to continuing his work with the company’s nationally respected Jan Miller Studio Artist Program. He also appears as guest conductor for Florida State Opera‘s The Cunning Little Vixen. Recent seasons have seen Cody leading productions of CarouselDie ZauberflöteDon GiovanniAs OneFlorencia en el AmazonasMan of La Mancha and María de Buenos Aires in Pensacola, in addition to various concert appearances. He made his debut with Fargo-Moorhead Opera conducting Jake Heggie’s Three Decembers in 2019. Other companies Cody has enjoyed working with include Des Moines Metro Opera, Arizona Opera, Opera Birmingham, Virginia Opera, and the Janiec Opera Company at Brevard Music Center.

Cody holds degrees from Murray State University and Florida State University. He lives in Pensacola with his former shelter dog, Rosina, a corgi/dachshund mix (@rosinathelongdog).

>> Artist Website

Amy Hutchison*

as Stage Director

Amy Hutchison’s “fascinating, brilliantly mounted double bill” productions of Donizetti’s IL PIGMALIONE and RITA for Chicago Opera Theater wowed audiences and critics alike. Hutchison has also championed American opera throughout her career. She recently staged AS ONE for San Antonio’s Alamo City Opera, as well as for Chicago Fringe Opera, where she curated a Trans Artist Showcase at The Center on Halsted in conjunction with the production. Her production of Missy Mazzoli’s SONG FROM THE UPROAR: THE LIVES AND DEATHS OF ISABELLE EBERHARDT was hailed as “imaginative” and “striking contemporary music theater.” She has directed William Bolcom’s A VIEW FROM THE BRIDGE for Teatro dell’Opera di Roma, Washington National Opera and Portland Opera. Her collaboration with Ricky Ian Gordon and Stacey Tappan, ONCE I WAS: SONGS BY RICKY IAN GORDON, was staged at the Chicago Cultural Center and recorded on the Blue Griffin label.

Hutchison’s production of William Grant Still’s epic masterwork TROUBLED ISLAND for South Shore Opera Company of Chicago was named the number one classical music event of 2013 by the Chicago Sun-Times. Other productions for South Shore Opera include: Steven M. Allen’s THE POET, Joelle Lamarre’s THE VIOLET HOUR: THE LIFE OF LEONTYNE PRICE; Jonathan Stinson’s THE MARCH: A CIVIL RIGHTS OPERA PROJECT and Samuel Coleridge-Taylor’s DREAM LOVERS and AFRICAN ROMANCES. Other Chicago area productions include the American premiere of Paul Abraham’s gorgeous jazz operetta THE FLOWER OF HAWAII and Leo Fall’s MADAME POMPADOUR (Folks Operetta), Ross Crean’s THE TIMES ARE NIGHTFALL (Pride Films & Plays), FAUST (DuPage Opera), BRIGADOON (Music By the Lake), and Ned Rorem’s OUR TOWN (DePaul Opera Theatre). Productions nationwide include several productions of CARMEN (Kansas City, Milwaukee, Columbus), TURANDOT (Orlando), DON PASQUALE (Indianapolis), LA TRAVIATA (Costa Mesa), IL MATRIMONIO SEGRETO (Boston), and Menotti’s HELP! HELP! THE GLOBOLINKS! (Madison).

She has served on the directing staffs of Lyric Opera of Chicago and Houston Grand Opera. She has staged the Maurice Sendak production of HANSEL & GRETEL for Opernhaus Zürich, The Juilliard School (televised for PBS: Live from Lincoln Center) and for the Canadian, San Diego, Indianapolis, and Baltimore opera companies. As Associate Director, Hutchison has staged PORGY AND BESS throughout the United States and globally, including Milan’s Teatro alla Scala, L’Opéra National de Paris and opera houses in Düsseldorf, Lucca and Tokyo.

​Dedicated to artist training, Hutchison has been a faculty member of The Bienen School of Music at Northwestern University, Westminster Choir College and its CoOPERAtive Training Program, as well as directing and coaching the young artists of Lyric Opera’s Ryan Artist Center and Houston Opera Studio.

Upcoming: AS ONE (Pensacola Opera) and South Shore Opera Company of Chicago’s 10th Anniversary Celebration

* Pensacola Opera debut artist

Production Team

CONDUCTOR | Cody Martin
STAGE DIRECTOR | Amy Hutchison*
REHEARSAL PIANIST | Stephen Variames*
TECHNICAL DIRECTOR |  Kayla Stephenson*
STAGE MANAGER | Robin Bonta*  

* Pensacola Opera debut artist


Special Thanks

As One is presented through a special partnership with Sunday’s Child and a generous contribution by Diane Peterson, in memory of her husband and son, Sean and Brad Peterson.

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