VISITOR Soprano – Age range from mid-twenties to mid-forties, thoughtful, sensitive.

OLD WOMAN Soprano – Sixties or older, polite but confused

NURSE Soprano – Any age from teens to middle age, helpful but distracted

Piano accompaniment

Cast on recording:
Visitor: Michelle Jennings
Old Woman: Willsonia Boyer

Based on the story “Benedicta” by Sarah Braunstein
Premiere: June 2013, Harrower Opera Workshop, Atlanta, Georgia; Dwight Coleman, director

I suspect scenes like this happen a lot across the country these days, as more people live longer and are subject to the ravages of old age. When I read Sarah Braunstein’s story in “The Sun” I was reminded anew that human beings are never just patients, or relatives, or any one role. They are people with histories — and names.

Length: 12 minutes

(click to launch matching score)

A young woman whose beloved grandmother has just passed away in a nursing home has arrived to deal with undertakers and other matters. While she is waiting she is approached by an old woman in a wheelchair, unknown to the visitor, who addresses her with great urgency.

Excerpt – Benedicta