Event gallery: Death and the Powers Production Photos - Patricia Risley
Event gallery: Death and the Powers Production Photos - Patricia Risley

Death and the Powers: The Robots’ Opera

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When the eccentric patriarch Simon Powers downloads himself into The System, his entire house comes to life around his family and friends. A groundbreaking new production developed by the MIT Media Lab in partnership with the A.R.T., Tod Machover’s Death and the Powers explores what we leave behind for the world and our loved ones, using specially designed technology and an expressively animated stage, including a chorus of robots and a musical chandelier. Machover, called “America’s most wired composer” by the L.A. Times, distinctively blends technological and artistic finesse to create a score that is passionately inventive, yet filled with arching melodic lines. Death and the Powers, which received its world premiere in Monaco in the fall of 2010, is supported by Futurum Association (Monaco), and will be presented in collaboration with Chicago Opera Theater, in association with Opera Boston.

Notable dates



Tuesday, March 22
Post-show discussion with composer Tod Machover and librettist Robert Pinsky.

Sunday, March 27
An Evening with Robert Pinsky
Join us for an evening with librettist and three-time Poet Laureate Robert Pinsky as he combines poetry with jazz at the A.R.T.’s club theater OBERON. Learn more >>

Rebecca Gold Milikowsky and Nathan Milikowsky; Don and Susan Ware

Restaurant Parnters: Rustic Kitchen

Photos & Videos



Choreography Karole Armitage
Costume Design David C. Woolard
Lighting Design Donald Holder
Sound Design Chris Full
Visual and Software Design Peter Torpey
Media Design Matt Checkowski
Sound Technology Ben Bloomberg
Associate Director Andrew Eggert


Simon Powers James Maddalena
Evvy Emily Albrink
Miranda Sara Heaton
Nicholas Hal Cazalet
The United Way Douglas Dodson
The United Nations David Kravitz
The Administration Tom McNichols

The Miseries

Yavni Bar–Yam, Julie Chilton, Rachel Coffin, Maru Colbert, Erin Cole, Pete Cormier, Becki Dennis, Kevin Fennessy, Andrea Foertsch, Lori Forman, Laura Hubbard, Olga Karagiozi, George King, Taya Leary, Diana Librizzi, Emily Lonardo, Meg Di Maggio, Maggie Morio, Rebecca Perry, Matt Phillipps, Oliver L. Saffery, Rebecca Schneebaum, John A. Shane, Bob Stachel, Jeff Q, Julia C. Tenney, Lauren Thomas, Larry Vigus, Amy West, Casey Wright, Alina Wysocki 

Chorus of Operabots


Flue/Piccolo Sarah Brady
Oboe/English Horn Jennifer Slowik
Clarinet/Bass Clarinet Michael Norsworthy
French Horn Whitacre Hill
Trumpet Terry Everson
Trombone Hans Bohn
Tuba Kenneth Amis
Percussion Robert Schulz
Keyboard 1 (including live electronics) John McDonald
Keyboard 2 (including electronic triggers for sound and image) Linda Osborn-Blaschke
Violin I Charles Dimmick
Violin II Annie Rabbat
Viola Joan Ellersick
Cello Nicole Cariglia
Bass Anthony D’Amico

Additional Credits

Manager Sisie Siu Cohen
Robot Mechanical Design Bob Hsiung
Robotic Control Systems Michael Miller
Interaction Design Elena Jessop
Assistant Director Allegra Libonati
Assistant Lighting Designer Rebecca Makus
Production Stage Manager Nancy Harrington
Stage Managers Julie Baldauff
Carolyn Boyd
Dana Stremming
Technology Development Opera of the Future Group, MIT Media Lab
Production Team Credits