Jack Perla


Jack Perla is active in opera, jazz, chamber, and symphonic music. With his New York-based group Music Without Walls and subsequently in San Francisco, he has steadily forged a reputation for cross-fertilization of jazz and classical music. Among his operatic commissions have been Shalimar the Clown, based on Salman Rushdie’s novel (Opera Theatre of Saint Louis, 2016); An American Dream (Seattle Opera, 2015); Jonah and the Whale (LA Opera, 2014); Mich and the Moon (Opera Memphis, 2014); Love/Hate (San Francisco Opera Center and ODC Theater, 2012, reprised by the Manhattan School of Music, the Philadelphia Fringe Festival, and Maryland Opera Theater); River of Light (Houston Grand Opera, 2014); and Courtside (Houston Grand Opera, 2011). Perla is a recipient of the prestigious Thelonious Monk Institute Jazz Composers Award and has performed as a pianist at the Texaco New York Jazz Festival, Knitting Factory, Tampere Jazz Festival, Big Sur, Monterey and Pacifica Jazz Festivals, and the Millennium Festival in London. His third jazz recording, Poet’s Cabaret, was released in 2015. Perla was artist-in-residence at ODC Theater from 2006 to 2009, and during the same period participated in American Opera Projects’ Composers and the Voice and Tapestry New Opera’s LibLab.