1001 OPERA LIBRETTI
A young couple, universally attractive and recently married, attempt
to defy a new state law forbidding procreation, their arias proclaiming
erotic success, in spite of the relentless maneuverings of their anxious
parents and the mean police.
This languid, multimedia portrayal of the obsessions and problems of
a Communist politician's daughter's undergoing psychoanalysis in pre-War
Berlin comes to an unhappy end.
A terminally ill insurance investigator initiates a complicated scheme
to be charged with murder and thus sentenced to death, prompting his
family to collect a generous insurance settlement; but for reasons beyond
his control, his plans go posthumously awry.
Just after a young girl learns the facts of life from a beloved aunt
who is dying, love blossoms, prompting the girl to break away from the
mother surrogate to become an independent adult.
A fading pop singer falls in love with a legally underage girl with
pop-music ambitions, the quality of his voice perceptibly declining
as her improves.
Juvenile zombies guard diamonds hidden in a sunken ship, initially from
piracy by their avaricious parents and then from retired policemen.
A teenage black gang, railroaded into long prison terms for crimes they
did not commit, becomes a popular cause for fashionable people, who
eventually succeed in exonerating the young men, the story ending, alas,
before we can discover whether they can use their rediscovered freedom
A masked rider becomes a hero for the oppressed, successfully stealing
from the rich to give to the poor until a conflagration caused by Nature
causes his untimely death.
The protagonist finds a strange coin that gives him an inexplicable
but visible power over others.
An African-American housekeeper with theatrical aspirations is suddenly
asked to substitute for her world-famous boss, a temperamental star,
and after a successful debut, visible to all, becomes a universally
renowned star herself.
Confrontations between a purportedly defecting spy and the counter-intelligence
agent who wants to unmask the defector as a devious double-agent are
so confusing that the audience necessarily receive, upon exiting the
theater, an explanatory flier that incidentally explains why the program
notes are insufficient.
A hacker-nerd falls for a preternaturally devious teenager (of indefinite
gender, with various vocal articualations) who initiates him into a
life of computer crime.
Singing resounding, angry choruses, students at a purportedly classy
boarding school revolt against being ritually lobotomized by their teachers
who know full well that distance from paying parents gives them opportunities
unavailable to public school employees.
A rural physician with a distaste for animals performs emergency surgery
upon a great dane who, upon recovering, resists leaving the physician's
side, the opera closing with a duet between the dog's affectionate yelps
and the physician's mellow bass.
The widowed mother of several children marries a widower with several
more children, living together happily forever after with an almost
uncountable, surely unmanageable brood of not just children but grandchildren
who sing together in choruses whose number is ever increasing.
A young humanoid who has spent his entire life imprisoned in a zoo appears
to fall in love with two newcomers-- a freshly hired female zookeeper
and a young man hiding among the elephants to evade the police.
A young immigrant, joining a local street gang, makes the tactical mistake
of becoming the secret lover of the gang leader's freshly nubile daughter
in an autobiographical opera left unfinished by the composer's untimely
Two couples, assigned to share the same apartment during a housing shortage,
find themselves falling in love with one another in unexpected, calamitous
ways, the quality of their arias changing during the performance from
mellow at the beginning to antagonistic at the end.
A single young gent, infatuated with a particularly married housewife
living on the other side of town, disguises himself as a teenager in
order to get a job ostensibly mowing her lawn but implicitly peeking
into her bedroom windows.
A veteran team of opera-authors, one a composer and the other a librettist,
stage an opera about two men successfully producing an opera about two
men producing an opera.
Residing on another planet, eternally young superpeople oversee a chorus
of voices that is rapidly aging.
The young woman who inherits the factory that employs most of a small
town falls in love with a laborer whom her relatives forbid her to marry,
to the audible distress of everyone else in her neighborhood.
A band of unemployed war veterans organize an urban posse to capture
long-wanted criminals whose songs, especially in choruses, reflects
A diva falls deeply in love with the hidden prompter to the disappointment
of the highly visible conductor.
Three law students--two male, the other female--attempt in a series
of solos, duets, and trios to defend a rapist whom they think falsely
A young man drawn to the operatic life is wooed by a young woman, an
only child, who wants him instead to enter her family's prosperous business,
thus opera ending sooner than most.
Nurses who organize to expose doctors' duplicitous dealings in illicit
drugs eat hospital food that, to their surprise, makes them deathly
A teenage boy brushes with delinquency before returning to his putatively
authoritarian father, in a rare example of an all-male opera.
A young provincial writes a novel so successful that she is invited
to reside in the capital city where, given her brittle temperament,
she could not survive.
The father of our country not only brings warring factions together
but he invents love.
A veteran crook returns from prison to find his grown son beginning,
with his mother's encouragement, a criminal life.
The prince and the princess are a dull married couple until the prince
takes a mistress and the princess disguises herself as a singing streetwalker
in order to win him back.
The quality of a woman's voice changes, along with her love life, after
she undergoes extensive plastic surgery.
Three traveling salesmen, friends as well as competitors, flirt with
love objects of different ages and different sorts during their visit
to a small city.
A promiscuous young man, more accurately a precocious lecher, now in
his early twenties, is required, as well as permitted, to redo the last
two years of high school.
The leader of our military, armed with at least three kinds of guns,
spends a night in a house he doesn't know in advance to be heavily haunted.
A homely woman of intimidating deductive intelligence helps an elderly
man, hiding from the police in her basement, to find the real culprit.
Several single men share an expensive car to use on their most desirable
Everyone signs their approval of the eloping young lovers except for
the grandfather who had endowed the bride's trust fund.
A young contralto in a sexist culture disguises as a boy in order to
run a store whose profits would benefit her ailing family.
The actor portraying a philanderer loses his previously faithful wife
to a real-life philanderer.
A space ship heading for the planet Pluto breaks the time barrier and
thus returns to Earth in the thirtieth century, the style of the accompanying
music changing appropriately.
An ambitious new legal secretary tries to impress her boss by closing
an outstanding estate without knowing that such initiative was contrary
to her boss's ulterior aims.
Two teenage boys idolize an opera singer and, unbeknownst to her, attempt
to follow her home.
A body-builder, drunk on his own strength, comes to realize that his
body has become a bomb that can be easily detonated.
A young woman employed as a chambermaid in a palatial mansion informs
a wealthy family that she is their daughter who was kidnapped twenty
One twin, an opera composer, is forced to take the place of his brother,
the opera singer who has suddenly and mysteriously disappeared.
A variety of genuinely attractive sex receptacles tempt a Catholic priest
to break his sacred vows.
Several black women, living in a decrepit tenement on a dead-end street,
struggle heroically to overcome sexism, racism, and economic exploitation.
A group of nuns become trapped in an horrific underworld until rescued
by their order-mates, in a rare all-women opera.
He commuted between two wives--one outgoing and glamorous, the other
retiring and modest--until the former wanted to become more domestic
and the latter more erotic.
A woman resumes an intimate relationship with an old lover who, his
past unknown to her husband, has become his right-hand employee.
A blind woman, witnessing a murder, tries to convince the police, as
well as the audience, of the truth of her testimony.
Two ex-convicts become publicly recognized good Samaritans in the tradition
of Robin Hood, featured even on television, while continuing a life
of nasty crime.
A young man with over-protective parents is invited to the beach and
then initiated into adulthood by his mother's best friend.
An intricate, morally ambiguous drama about life at the top of a multinational
corporation on the verge of bankruptcy disintegrates into a familiarly
simple romance between the president and, no joke, his "vice-president
for corporate affairs."
Housewives go to a bar, open only during daylight hours, where they
can live out their romantic fantasies with otherwise unemployed men.
A small-town newspaperman, confronted with a contempt citation, refuses
scrupulously in court to divulge the name of a confidential source.
A precocious young woman rebels against her parents by adopting outrageous
dress that sends the wrong message and gets her into sexual trouble.
Prisoners-of-war, perhaps threatened with death, are determined to tunnel
their way out of a prison camp.
A psychic female cop uses extrasensory powers to uncover a spy in the
An illiterate laborer helps an aristocratic woman escape from a barbed
A young woman is determined to find the people responsible for the unsolved
crime in which her father lost his life.
A series of flashbacks reveals that a theatrical agent has, as a spurned
suitor, killed the prima donna he has promoted to professional success.
The protagonists' spaceship crashes on a previously unknown planet filled
with beings resembling familiar textbook dinosaurs.
A high-flying fashion designer falls in love with a retired athlete,
who brings her down to earth, initially in a billiards parlor.
The new king of a mythical country spends most of his days eluding "kidnappers"
contracted to bring him back to the town in which he was born.
A classy widow, discovering that her late husband was actually a thief,
tries to make restitution to each of his victims.
A veteran, sensitive prosecutor commits a victimless crime in order
to discover what life in the jailhouse is really like.
Three police detectives, looking for the body of a man thought to have
been killed, discover instead a woman with a strangely reconstructed
A world-famous singer struggles, at first in private, to resume her
career after a crippling accident.
Since a woman's husband doesn't want to make a baby, she propositions
While investigating a murder, the chief of police inadvertently kills
a woman whose death he conceals while continuing the initial search.
Three handsome male secretaries try to lure their boss away from an
A young wife is trying to locate her missing husband, who has accidentally
witnessed a gangland murder, before the assassins do.
Continuous conflicts erupt between two boys whose mother is tall and
black and father is white and small.
A widow marries a widower, who very much in love with each other, want
to move all their children into the same modest apartment house.
The corporate president's wife resorts to voodoo in order to further
A rich girl must pretend to be poor in order to discover the welfare
recipient who has custody of her late sister's children.
College buddies, together for the first time since graduation, discover,
after some initial bluffing, that their lives haven't turned out as
planned or wished.
A long-standing feud between two families blows up when the daughter
of one elopes with, and then is impregnated by, the son of another.
An eccentric elderly woman, sure that she is being spied upon, becomes
even more paranoid when her husband and son come to visit.
Whenever men must always do the asking, a chorus repeatedly chant, women
always do the deciding.
A little boy, witnessing the rape of his older sister, is unable to
convince anyone other than his parents that he's telling the truth.
Marrying on the rebound a man who actually abuses her, she works up
enough disgust, and courage, to shoot her husband as a rapist.
A prominent dress designer flatters, in all the ways known to his profession,
a glamorous singing star until she agrees to wear his clothing in every
A college president, traveling by plane to receive an honorary degree
from his alma mater, recalls the disappointments both personal and professional
of his undergraduate life.
An orphan who survived growing up on the streets protects other waifs
from those who would abuse children.
Several children decide to keep their parents' accidental death a secret
and, since they are close in age, to supervise themselves, rather than
becoming wards of the state who would, against their wishes, be dispersed
The sheriff who accidentally kills a policeman is legally obliged to
care for his colleague's widow and several children.
A basketball-loving physical education teacher, Caucasian, is invited
to coach the men's freshman team at an inner-city vocational school.
Two detectives, one tall and the other short, attempt over the course
of an entire week to discover the whereabouts of a missing body.
A newly famous, freshly wealthy writer moves his family to the suburbs
where his wife falls in love with his publisher.
A young man, caught between two desirous women, is ultimately uninterested
All the girl friends to whom the traveling salesman has given his apartment
key suddenly, and unexpectedly, show up at his home.
A private investigator, assigned to investigate the disappearance of
a child, journeys to the top of a mountain where he finds, instead,
a pagan cult.
The mining company preparing to bulldoze unoccupied lands does not notice
the presence of natives who are sabotaging its efforts.
An impoverished widow, unable to earn money, takes homeless street women
into her house in exchange for their support.
Two clowns disguise themselves as police detectives when the circus
ringmaster is murdered, fooling not only real policemen but the killer.
A widower marrying his late wife's sister frequently addresses her with
the dead woman's name.
The butler and housekeeper pretend to be masters of the house when their
boss is away.
An imperious woman discovers a long-suppressed document that reveals
she has inherited a witch's curse from long-dead descendants.
A fugitive American murderer, seeking refuge in Jerusalem, is discovered
by three Hasidic children who think him to be Christ.
An old-maid college professor, at a professional convention, invites
several male colleagues to her hotel room, and later charges them with
rape, though each insists under oath that he was voluntarily seduced.
The highly variable prowess of a male prostitute depends upon the changing
positions of the heavenly stars.
A small-town spinster decides to escape from her father, who owns the
town's principal factory, by joining the traveling basketball team initially
as an equipment manager.
An aging opera singer, unable to accept declining powers, spends most
of her spare time continually seducing ever younger starlets.
Though a nightmare-ridden woman discovers that the killers in her dreams
actually roam the streets of her neighborhood, her policeman husband
doesn't believe her.
An idealistic teenager persuades her father, a distinguished lawyer,
to defend the town hobo against a murder she knows the bum did not commit.
An athletic young man, suddenly religious, too poor to fly by airplane,
dons home-made wings to gain direct access to the Pope; and though reported
to the police as an unidentified flying object, he succeeds in his mission.
The patrician fiancee of a smuggler becomes a nun.
In a pocket of a jacket left to her for repairs a lonely woman tailor
finds a love letter that gives her so much vicarious pleasure that she
neglects the electric pressing equipment, accidentally setting off a
fire alarm; but among her rescuers is a handsome fireman who, before
returning to work, makes a date for the following Saturday night.
An attractive young woman sleeps with enough enemy soldiers to penetrate
the headquarters, where she swiftly decapitates the general of the army
besieging her city.
In a country split by a war between socialists and anti-socialists,
two farm workers initiate a love affair that they expect will culminate
in marriage, should the socialists succeed.
An attractive man, having survived the domestic designs of six wives,
is house-broken by a seventh, who makes him the father and principal
provider of six children.
A group of underpaid immigrants organize a union, even though their
leader is murdered by the police and their meeting hall torched by arsonists.
The king's bride-to-be is charged with promiscuity by a scheming minister
who covets the woman for himself, his deceit aided by a yet more diabolical
assistant minister who fabricates forged photographic images of her
A politically awakened wife of a corporate mogul marries her husband's
After a couple moves from one city to another, the husband discovers,
in the course of making love to his wife, that she has become a human
radio receiver, thanks to the silver fillings in her teeth.
An illiterate farm girl successfully solves three riddles propounded
in three languages by a trilingual but simple-minded king.
A teenager plants a bomb that blows up the personal car used by the
chief of the invaders who had desecrated sacred lands and murdered his
mother and sister.
Two girls meet three soldiers, who vie with one another for each girl's
favors until they all decide it would be better for all if they were
joined by a third girl.
A newspaper reporter whose specialty is exposing political corruption
makes everyone suspicious by marrying the widow of a slain gangster.
The head of the police vice squad discovers that the most notorious
henna-haired prostitute in town is actually his brunette daughter who
ran away from home a decade before.
A fraudulent psychic cons himself into experiencing hallucinations and
in terror murders his crippled assistant, believing him to be haunted.
When the mother of fourteen children boasts of her fecundity, she arouses
the lethal wrath of the relatively infertile dictatorial matriarch.
A blonde maiden magically sprouts wings to free herself from rapists
who are subsequently captured by policemen with lead in their shoes.
When a group of male travelers become stranded on a sandbar at high
tide, one of them robs and murders a banker, absconding as well with
An innocent traveler walks into a mythical village that appears only
once a year, for only twenty-four hours, after disappearing several
centuries before in response to a plague of witches.
A predatory general is brought to trial at the entrance to heaven and,
before a tribunal of common people, is sentenced to death for his crimes
against humanity, notwithstanding his claim to have served his country
in over one hundred battles.
The princess who mysteriously loses her breasts becomes a man, prompting
her outraged husband, the prince, to become a woman if the illusion
of royal normalcy is to be preserved, causing so much confusion, both
private and public, that both decide simultaneously to resume their
original sexual identities.
A series of misfortunes prepare the protagonist for surprising good
In a dramatic night flight over mountains, the pilot of a single-engine
plane fights threatening winds.
A gangster pirate deliberately sends false signals to ships on stormy
nights to cause their destruction and then rob the wreckage until a
sailor who survives a shipwreck takes revenge on the pirate by kidnapping
him and then depositing him, bound up, in a dingy that is pushed out
One sister outfoxes the others in inheriting the bulk of their father's
A worldly young blonde who leeches on a slightly less worldly sugar
daddy boasts that "diamonds are a girl's best friend."
The dictator who rapes his virgin sister-in-law, cutting out her tongue
to prevent her from reporting the crime to his wife, in turn suffers
revenge when the mute woman kills his eldest male child, her nephew,
and serves the boy's roasted body at a royal feast.
A happily married contemporary couple get into a marriage-shattering
fight after viewing a film about life on a primitive island.
A married woman teases her former rival-in-love about her inability
to find a husband, while the audience recognizes that the single woman
actually has the more fortunate life.
The wife of a dead gangster reluctantly marries his slayer who is tormented
by memories of his yet undetected crime and is induced to confess when
he suspects, several months later, that his ex-wife's child might have
actually been fathered by her previous husband.
A reluctant bridegroom jumps out of a ground-floor window in order to
escape marriage and, he thinks, swift divorce.
After two political dissidents are beheaded, their widows, on hand to
claim their husbands' bodies, argue passionately over which torso belongs
to which head.
A chorus girl, in love with the theater's assistant manager, gently
resists the amorous advances of an electrician whom she also knows as
the assistant manager's best friend.
A repellingly ugly beggar inexplicably attracts a series of stunningly
An alienated, hyper-sensitive intellectual, adrift in a disorienting
post-War city, is arrested on unspecified charges and tried by hooded,
A cunning con-man from the city gets provincial farmers to supply him
first with liquor and then women.
A prim young woman is hired by a profligate monarch to teach writing
and 'rithmetic to the children of his wives and concubines.
A young man, spurned by his girl friend, retires to a monastery only
to discover that, because of insufficient piety, he must return to a
sensual reunion with his apologetic lover.
When a man accidentally encounters the greatest love of his life, whom
he mistakenly rejected twenty years before, each is them is prompted
to remember the affair and their lives since.
A provincial Moslem woman who learns about feminist emancipation during
marriage abandons her polygamous husband in the dead of night, goes
to the city for an education, and becomes a scientist honored on her
triumphant return home.
Even in the daytime, a young woman imagines herself pursued by a man
with a whip and a woman armed with a baseball bat.
When a food wholesaler breaks his promise to marry a farmer's daughter,
the young woman, no longer a virgin, decides to leave her family and,
once alone in the city, establish a competing business.
A frustrated government clerk impersonates the chief of police in order
to arrest something untouchable to the regular police--the mayor of