TITLE: Trailer to “SAINT STEPHEN’S DREAM: A Space Opera”
BACKGROUND NOTES: Here is the trailer to “SAINT STEPHEN’S DREAM: A Space Opera.” The rock opera/musical/eco-fable/cli-fi story made its world debut at FestivALL Charleston in June 2011, a citywide cultural fest in the Charleston, W.Va. And then I dropped the ball. Trying to decide whether to pick it up again.
The space opera unfolds the tale of what happens after Earth reaches a tipping point and seems no longer able to support human habitation. Ten thousand ships of all sizes flee into low-earth orbit and beyond, as a dazed humanity struggles to reorganize itself in what comes to be known as Nuova Terra (New Earth). Powerful leaders ordain that a return to the dying Earth is no longer possible. They decrees that all should just lay back and be content.
After all, they have rich, full-immersion web environments. There are endless alternative realities into which people can escape, fleeing from the reality of the warehoused beds and tiny metal capsules where most people now reside on the great space vessels. ‘Who are you going to be today?’ asks the computer each new ‘morning’ in space, as people rove through history, their avatars pursuing the latest characters, happenings and trends.
One of the most powerful leaders, the Doge of Nuova Venezia, has brought to life 16th century Venice as a dominant immersive environment on his great ship, La Serenissima. A merry band of performers, rebels, dreamers and fools, aided by the strange ‘trans-humans’ known as the Shua, oppose this new order.
They willfully ‘unplug’ from the immersive web and gather in a space-borne club called Third Eye Cabaret, where most of the musical takes place. They keep alive the hope of returning to Earth someday, inspired by the 9th century writings of an Irish monk named Brother Stephen, whose ‘dream book’ diaries seem to foretell the planet’s despairing future, with just the slightest hint of possible salvation.