January 14, 2021

Creating The Factotum: A preview through photos

Lyric's Patrick G. and Shirley W. Ryan Opera Center is thrilled to be a part of the development of The Factotum, a new opera from the minds of Ryan Opera Center alumnus Will Liverman and DJ/recording artist DJ King Rico. The Factotum is a reimagining of Rossini's The Barber of Seville, placing the work in a present-day Black barbershop in Chicago while combining operatic singing with hip-hop, barbershop, gospel, funk, neo soul, and R&B music. The Ryan Opera Center held a music workshop for The Factotum in December 2020 and captured the behind-the-scenes process of creating the new work. 

In anticipation of the documentary called Creating The Factotum, take a look at some behind-the-scenes photos of The Factotum workshop that complied with Lyric's strict safety protocols and procedures.

Will Liverman, DJ King Rico, and Ryan Opera Center Music Director Craig Terry worked through music details safely in Terry's home before The Factotum workshop (and after receiving negative COVID tests).

Will Liverman and DJ King Rico coached Ryan Opera Center baritone Leroy Davis in a one-on-one rehearsal before the full cast workshop.

The Lyric Opera stage is set up to follow strict safety protocols to keep the singers safe and socially distant, including the creation of plexiglass compartments. The Factotum artists also were among the first to see our new seats in the Lyric Opera House.

Every artist sang behind plexiglass shields at a minimum of six feet away from each other to minimize risk of contact.

Ryan Opera Center alumnus and baritone Will Liverman, co-creator of The Factotum, at the workshop.

Here we see the full stage of artists who participated in The Factotum workshop. We are grateful to our Lyric crew and artistic teams for creating a safe way for these artists to sing and work together again.

All artists who were not singing were required to wear masks at all times during the workshop, including the creative team.

DJ/recording artist DJ King Rico worked his musical magic during The Factotum workshop.

Will Liverman, DJ King Rico, and Craig Terry listened intently to the artists; tinkered with material; and directed The Factotum workshop at a safe distance.

To learn more about The Factotum, visit our Creating The Factotum page.

Photos: Lyric Opera of Chicago