Paul Chihara on “Homer in Cyberspace”

June 2, 2008

[A letter that Paul Chihara sent to faculty and student composers about Homer in Cyberspace. He asked me to put it on the blog which I’m happy to oblige.]


The great Prussian general von Clausewitz once said: “At times the utmost audacity is the highest wisdom.” This applies, in my opinion, in composition as well. Nothing is worse than safe, academically correct music. And nothing more thrilling than to see someone take chances (big chances) in musical theater. Well, there is nothing safe about Roger Bourland’s HOMER IN CYBERSPACE, now showing at MacGowen Auditorium on the UCLA campus. Roger’s work is audacious, outrageous, and irreverent. It is also very beautiful, moving, and richly lyric. One of its songs, reprised in Act II, is a show stopper and a heart-breaker “I Used to be Beautiful.” HOMER crosses all sorts of lines: musical (from Rock to contemporary classical), gender, historical, theatrical, and philosophical. And it is a lot of fun, performed by an attractive and talented cast who can sing, dance, and act.

Just think: Roger is our department chairman! What fun, to have such a risk-taker at our helm! Don’t miss it, and be inspired to take your own risks!

Paul Chihara

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