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Soil and Soul: A Review of Fellow Travelers at Lyric Unlimited | Newcity Stage
RECOMMENDED Who is colluding with a spying Russia? Is North Korea still a threat? Who are the external terrorists? The internal terrorists? The trumpeting of today's headlines may have switched from print to Twitter, but there is an eerily familiar tone shared by now and the mid-fifties when The Lavender Scare's whispered gossip destroyed the careers and lives of those labelled "other" by emotionally corralling and dispersing them. Based on Thomas Mallon's 2007 novel, composer Gregory Spears, librettist Greg Pierce and director Kevin Newbury have given us a lyric theater history play that leaps from our soil and souls. Spears' bubbling melismas stutter and stammer, poised over the low droning of minimalism like human heartbeats fluttering over secrets hidden within metal filing cabinets. Along with Pierce, and championed by Newbury, Spears creates a musical language that often mimics speech; realism, when interrupted by outcries of lyricism or brilliant, choral cacophony, is magically