City Opera Vancouver and Pacific Opera Victoria presents the world premiere of Missing, shedding new light on a national crisis.
Written by Canadian Métis playwright Marie Clements, with a score by Juno Award-winning composer Brian Current, Missing confronts the tragedy of more than 1,200 missing and murdered First Nations, Inuit and Métis women and girls in Canada. It goes onto explore the devastation to communities and families left to grapple with their loss.
“The story of Missing can’t answer the questions I’ve been asking my whole life, but I am hoping it will join other voices who are asking the same question…” – Marie Clements
Commissioned by City Opera Vancouver to honour the memory of the murdered and missing Indigenous women, Missing is Clements first-ever opera libretto.
“The poignant tale she so brilliantly conceived lends itself to opera, as the human voice is a powerful vehicle to draw deep emotion and introspection,” says Charles Barber, artistic director of City Opera Vancouver. “It is the story of two women who represent so many – one who survives and one who does not, and it’s through their story we find hope and, for some, healing.”
Missing is set between Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside and Northern British Columbia’s notorious Highway of Tears, where at least 18 women have vanished or been found murdered since 1969.
Told through both English and the First Nations language of Gitxsan, widely spoken in First Nations communities along Highway 16, this chamber opera follows the fate of an Indigenous and non-Indigenous young woman whose lives become tragically intertwined.
“The story of Missing can’t answer the questions I’ve been asking my whole life, but I am hoping it will join other voices who are asking the same questions, telling their stories, and demanding an end to what should be unfathomable,” says Clements.
Missing plays The York Theatre (639 Commercial Dr, Vancouver) November 3-11. Visit https://cityoperavancouver.com for tickets and information.