Alternate Visions

Augmented Opera
  • Music: John Oliver
  • Libretto: Genni Gunn
  • Stage direction: Pauline Vaillancourt


Valerie and Richard develop a romantic relationship over the internet and decide to meet at a high-tech bar. The bar is also the soundstage for the filming of Alternate Visions, a reality TV series where couples come together or break up in front of a live audience. Overcome by fear at the last moment, they ask their respective best friends to go in their place…the misunderstandings multiply endlessly, raising questions about fidelity, the perception of reality and the culture of identity.

Human love and the universe created by the use of new communication technologies constitute the true protagonists of the action, and it’s from the confrontation between these two that the drama is created. The characters try to navigate this minefield as they are tossed around by forces they can’t control.

Composed by the Canadian John Oliver based on a libretto by the writer Genni Gunn and directed by Pauline Vaillancourt, the music of the augmented opera Alternate Visions, threads together an original score combining so-called scholarly music with styles that are more working-class.

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