Opera Columbus, ProMusica premiere newly-commissioned chamber opera based on 1913 Franklinton flood

Unlike its namesake, the composition of the music and writing of the libretto for chamber opera "The Flood" arrived in trickles and rivulets. Composer Korine Fujiwara recalled meeting with writer Stephen Wadsworth, sorting through Post-it Notes of story ideas and hearing the beginnings of melodies in her head.

"One of the earliest things that Stephen showed me was a poem on a piece of paper he'd written in a cab, and I'm reading the words silently to myself and already there's a melody going through my head," Fujiwara said during a break in rehearsals.

The immediate and lasting impact of trauma on generations of people is at the heart of "The Flood," inspired by the 1913 flood that destroyed the Franklinton neighborhood of Columbus. This new work is co-produced by Opera Columbus and ProMusica Chamber Orchestra. The opera references real events and real places in and around the city. The characters are fictional.

"The deepest part of the flood story is, ‘How do people metabolize such an experience?'" Wadsworth said. "But Columbus became the language we were using to talk about it."

"We all carry stuff. So I felt my duty was not to get in the way of the story but to still have something to say musically," Fujiwara said.