Oakland Opera

Tom Dean

Oakland Opera Theater - 90s - 2000s

Through Maria Kramer, a singer I knew from SF State University, I met Tom Dean and the Schleunes brothers, who were involved in what was then known as the Underworld Opera Company (and later became known as the Oakland Opera Theater). Tom Dean runs that company and has been an incredibly prolific producer of opera and theater productions for over 20 years. I played saxophone for several shows including "Close Your Mind and Kiss Me" and also composed some of the music for a couple of them including "Mask of Thorns" and "Asi que pasen cinco años", a Garcia Lorca play set to music). I was also roommates with Tom (and photographer Helena Petersen who did the photo above), for a couple of years in his warehouse in West Oakland. It was always a very creative artistic scene and I have a lot of respect for Tom for producing productions of such scale and with such consistency, for so many years. I learned a lot working with him and really appreciated the chance to compose some music for opera.

Here's a link to article in the East Bay Express that mentions my name in conjunction with an Oakland Opera production of the Lorca piece.