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Dr. Atomic at Santa Fe Opera

With this past summer’s acclaimed production by the Santa Fe Opera, 73 years after the first blinding nuclear detonation, Dr. Atomic finally came home. This 2005 contemporary opera by composer John Adams and librettist Peter Sellars centers on the inner turmoil of Dr. Robert Oppenheimer as he headed development of the first atomic bomb at Los Alamos Laboratories, situated barely 20 miles from the opera’s Crosby Theatre. In order to create a three-dimensional soundscape for the production — deftly balancing natural-sounding singing with full orchestration and evocative sound effects — eminent sound designer Mark Grey specified an augmented Meyer Sound loudspeaker system based around four CAL column array loudspeakers that had been recently installed at the theatre.

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