"Tesla" depicts the operatic rise of a penniless Serbo-Croatian immigrant to the heights of Gilded Age fame and power, the revolutionary race with Thomas Edison to fuel a new era of electricity. The second part explores the portentous aftermath: from the peak of worldly renown, Nikola Tesla pursues relentless visions of tapping natural forces that could further liberate mankind, but instead lead to his earthly demise. A true visionary, Tesla gave away a vast number of patents because they were fossil fuel-consuming, and went to work on the Tesla Coil which would connect humanity to the very wheelwork of nature and allow the extraction of free and non-polluting energy for all. As a result he died a pauper, crushed by the greed and hunger for power of his contemporaries.
Recorded from Audience during 2004
New York City Opera
Vox Festival Workshop:
Tesla Reflection Endsong (excerpt from end of Parallel Worlds)
Vocal Solo: Nikola Tesla (2 pianos replace the orchestra for this workshop)
Scene 5 - Parallel Worlds of Tesla & Edison - Split Lab Scene (excerpt)
Vocal Quintet: Nikola Tesla, Thomas Edison, JP Morgan, George Westinghouse and Tommie (aka Huckleberry) (2 pianos replace the orchestra for this workshop)
Steeped in the forests of where I called
my home, there was no inkling of this rush...
Only the clatter of water and matters of
poverty, sickness, religious transgression.
My mother was an artisan, an inventor...
From cheap and borrowed bits,
She made each day we lived...
I had so little but...
The books I'd seen and my ideas...
And a wind that bent the fir trees over
so only I could see and hear.
Only I alone. Only I could see and hear
the fierce, but useful force behind it all...
Only I alone.
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"Carson Kievman is a composer of extremely original music, which is rare" Olivier Messiaen, composer
"I have been familiar with Mr. Kievman’s work since 1978, when I produced his brilliantly innovative musical work for the theater, WAKE UP, IT’S TIME TO GO TO BED! I feel that Mr. Kievman ranks among the foremost modern composers in his understanding of both the components of musical composition and in the particular demands of a theatrical music work. Mr. Kievman has the somewhat rare ability to translate the dramatic and emotional contexts of his works to his audience in a powerful and profound way musically. This strong combination of Mr. Kievman’s innovative technical abilities as a composer with his powerful emotional and dramatic sense make him an artist very worthy of consideration"Joseph Papp, producer
Example of Carson Kievman's music fully realized with orchestra & chorus: Symphony No. 2(42) - Resurrection (excerpt from 4th Movement)
Commissioned by the Florida Philharmonic Orchestra for the 200th anniversary of Mozart’s death
Polish National Radio Symphony Katowice /
Polish Radio Choir of Krakow
New Albion Records (1996)