The Robots: a chamber opera by Carolyn Chen


​​On a secluded island, a mega-corporation produces and sells an army of artificial humanoid laborers. As an activist’s quest to emancipate the robots blurs the distinction between humans and machines, a mysterious “sickness” begins to infect robots globally, heralding impending catastrophe for humanity!

In just a handful of seasons, Project [BLANK] has established a growing reputation as San Diego’s most innovative “opera company to watch” (San Diego Union-Tribune), and is closing its sixth season with the world premiere of THE ROBOTS by Carolyn Chen. This genre-bending operatic adaptation of an early sci-fi play from 1920 — “Rossum’s Universal Robots” by Karel Čapek — takes place on an isolated island where a workforce of mass-produced humanoid robots gradually gains self-awareness and revolts against the human creators. Čapek’s play first coined the term “robot” from the Czech word for “slave”, and was a strong condemnation of exploitative labor practices in the early 20th Century. Performed by a diverse cast of some of the best singers in the region, Chen’s exuberant and eclectic score will come to life in this revolutionary new production, immersing the entire audience into the action of the robot uprising!