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News / Theater & Performance

See David Lang’s chilling and brilliant Little Match Girl Passion at the Met Breuer

Photograph: Clayton Raithel

There are plenty of heartwarming holiday shows you could catch around town: the festive high-kicks of the Rockettes, Balanchine’s Nutcracker or some variation on A Christmas Carol. Truly daring culture vultures will gravitate to the Met Breuer next Tuesday for a more offbeat seasonal diversion. MetLiveArts presents a site-specific performance of composer David Lang’s The Little Match Girl Passion. The 2007 choral work (which Lang also orchestrated with chorus playing simple percussion) is based on the sad yet beautiful Hans Christian Andersen story about a poor girl who sits shivering in the cold one New Year’s Eve, imagining warmer and happier times. The site-specific, immersive event will be staged by Rachel Chavkin (Natasha, Pierre & the Great Comet of 1812) and performed by the vocal ensemble Ekmeles (pictured). To get a taste of the post-minimalist composer’s uniquely ethereal writing for voice, click on the video below.

If you miss Little Match Girl, not to worry. Next month, fans of Lang’s operatic work can catch the New York premiere of anatomy theater in the Prototype festival. Running January 7-14 at BRIC in Brooklyn, the piece dramatizes a public dissection of human cadavers for the purpose of finding the physiological differences between moral and immoral persons. Yeah, not for the squeamish. Bob McGrath of Ridge Theater directs the opera, which has a libretto by Mark Dion and a cast led by Broadway veteran Marc Kudisch (Assassins).

Little Match Girl Passion plays 
Tuesday at 7pm in the lobby of The Met Breuer at 945 Madison Avenue. Tickets start at $65 and include admission to the museum. You can purchase tickets online or by calling 212-570-3949.