Instrumentation: 10 Primary Roles, 5 Supernumeraries, SSAATTBB Chorus, Dancers, Orch, Egtr, Elec
Duration: 2:00:00
Performers: Tapestry New Opera
Commissioned by Tapestry New Opera
Premiered by Tapestry New Opera at the Imperial Oil Theatre in Toronto on May 24, 2017.
Score and recordings available upon request

Program Notes

The opera is set in 1997. Sex trafficking from Eastern Europe has started to pick up steam but is not as well known a threat as it is today. A teenage girl from Ukraine, named Oksana, is recruited by a pimp from Russian Georgia, named Konstantin. He tricks her into coming with him, passing through Greece before he begins prostituting her in Italy. In the meantime, he discovers he has feelings for her. Oksana’s parents, having heard nothing from their daughter, are beside themselves with worry.

Oksana manages to escape and ends up at an Italian refugee shelter, run by a Canadian priest, Alexander. She begins the slow process of recovery, eventually building a bond with Alexander. Oksana’s parents are overjoyed when Alexander calls to tell them she is all right. Meanwhile Konstantin searches for Oksana, obsessed, burning all of his bridges in the process.

Eventually, Konstantin finds Oksana and goes to the refugee shelter, where he, Oksana, and Alexander have a confrontation. Konstantin leaves disappointed, but he starts working on a plan to kill Alexander and capture Oksana.

As a result of the incident, Oksana plans to return home. Alexander goes out expecting to rescue another woman, falling for Konstantin’s ploy, but he manages to survive. Konstantin breaks into the refugee shelter to take Oksana away, the two fight, and both are fatally wounded. Alexander returns to find Oksana near the point of death and only at that moment does he realize the strength of his feelings for her. Oksana dies, and the opera ends with her parents wondering why she has not arrived at the appointed time.