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Lisa Scola Prosek

San Francisco, CA         

Lisa Scola Prosek


Composer,Librettist, Soprano, Pianist.


San Francisco Bay Guardian, Berkeley Daily Planet :


“ a gifted Bay Area composer”


 Lisa Scola Prosek  is bi-lingual, both in her approach to composition, and in her opera librettos. Lisa was raised in Rome, Italy, and graduated from Princeton University, where she studied with Edward Cone and Milton Babbitt.


Lisa studied composition with Lukas Foss in New York, and singing with Margherita Kalil of the Met, and composition with Gaetano Giani-Luporini at the Conservatorio Luigi Cherubini in Florence.


 To date, Scola Prosek has composed 8 operas, with librettos in Italian and English, and was commissioned by the San Francisco International Arts Festival, in co-production with the NY Center for Contemporary Opera, for a new opera, The Lariat, based on Jaime De Angulo’s novella. The libretto for The Lariat is written with excerpts in the Esselen language, a recently revived California Native language.


Currently in production with Long Beach Opera outreach, is Daughter of the Red Tzar,comissioned in 2012 by Thick House Theater  for acclaimed tenor John Duykers.  Based on Churchill’s midnight meeting with Stalin and his daughter Svetlana as narrated in Churchill’s” The Hinge of Fate” and Svetlana’s “20 Letters to a Friend”. Daughter of The Red Tzar enjoyed capacity audiences for all performances when Joshua Kosman of the San Francisco Chronicle reviewed: ”compelling and illuminating in its details…Scola-Prosek’s score is a creation marked by shapely vocal set pieces and an alluring melodic vein that probes the drama. Svetlana’s teenage heartache is skillfullysketched in lyrical numbers.”


Lisa’s opera Dieci Giorni 10 Days, which premiered in September of 2010 at Thick House was written in collaboration with composer Erling Wold and director Jim Cave, and based on Boccaccio’s Decameron.


In 2008, Lisa premiered Trap Door, commissioned by The Lab, and made possible by the LEF Foundation, an opera based on one soldier’s experience in Iraq, and inspired by Camus’ The Stranger.


Belfagor, libretto in Italian, which premiered in 2007 at Thick House, is the comic tale of self-destructive materialism by Machiavelli, composed as a Commedia Dell’Arte farce. The San Francisco Bay Guardian reviewed :“an impressive debut by a gifted local composer”.


With the Schola Cantorum choir, Lisa premiered Asperges Me, with orchestra, made possible by the American Composers Forum’s Community Engagement Program.


Lisa Scola Prosek is the recipient of numerous commissions, grants and awards, including from the NY Center for Contemporary Opera, The San Francisco Arts Commission, Theatre Bay Area, the Argosy Foundation Contemporary Music Fund, (for Belfagor and Trap Door), and from the LEF Foundation, Meet The Composer, The Hewlett Foundation, the Zellerbach Foundation, (for Dieci Giorni: 10 Days,) and the American Composers Forum.


Lisa also serves as General Manager and principal pianist of the San Francisco Composers Chamber Orchestra, which produces 3 concerts a year of new works for orchestra at Old First Church in San Francisco. 


Professional Affiliations ASCAP, Opera America,


Publisher Theodore Front Music.


The Confession

Lisa Scola Prosek’s “The Confession” from Boccacio’s Decameron. Father Albert hears Lisetta’s Confession, while contemplating how to seduce her.
From Dieci Giorni10 Days, Thick House Theater, San Francisco, 2010. William Sauerland, coutertenor, Crystal Philippi, mezzo soprano.

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Inside an Enigma

Published on Oct 13, 2012
John Duykers as Winston Churchill, prepares to meet Stalin at the Kremlin in 1942.
Directed by Melissa Weaver, Martha Stoddard, conducting. Video by Dan Friedman.
Thick House Theater, August, 2012. A ScolaVox and First Look Sonoma Production.

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Churchill in The Bath

Published on Aug 13, 2013
Title: John Duykers as Churchill
From Daughter of the Red Tzar by Lisa Scola Prosek
With SFCCO, Martha Stoddard , Conducting
In this excerpt from the opera, Churchill has just arrived to Moscow, and is shown a large luxurious bathroom. He contemplates what he will propose to Stalin, and the eventual victory of the Allies, while taking one of the long baths he was famous for.

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