Fellow Travelers

March 17. 2018 - March 25. 2018

Upcoming Dates

March 17. 2018 - March 25. 2018

Chicago Premiere Fellow Travelers


At the height of the McCarthy era in 1950s Washington, D.C., recent college graduate Timothy Laughlin is eager to join the crusade against communism. A chance encounter with a handsome State Department official, Hawkins Fuller, leads to Tim’s first job—and his first relationship with a man. Drawn into a maelstrom of deceit, Tim struggles to reconcile his political convictions and his forbidden love for Fuller—an entanglement that will end in a stunning act of betrayal.

Lyric Opera is proud to present the Chicago premiere of this work, which was praised as “a near-perfect example of fast-flowing musical drama” by The New York Times in its 2016 world premiere. The Wall Street Journal raved, “Mr. Spears’s subtle, lyrical music is beautiful without being obvious or sentimental…Kevin Newbury’s directing, particularly of the love scenes, was as honest and touching as the opera.”

  • Language: Sung in English with projected English text
  • Running Time: 2 hours, 5 minutes with 1 intermission
  • Location: Athenaeum Theatre, 2936 N. Southport Avenue, Chicago

Fellow Travelers

An opera by Gregory Spears
Libretto by Greg Pierce

Purchase on Amazon or Apple Music.


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“Last Night”

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“I Worry That's All”

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TIME and PLACE: September 1953 to May 1957, in Washington, D.C. Eisenhower is president. Senator Joseph McCarthy is stoking fears that the U.S. federal government is full of Communists, Soviet spies, and homosexuals.

Program book

Go inside this production of Fellow Travelers with engaging articles, notes from the director, a complete plot synopsis, artist bios, and more.

View Digital Program Book

Meet the artists

* Lyric Opera debut
** Ryan Opera Center alumni
*** Current Member, Ryan Opera Center

Lyric Unlimited presentation of Fellow Travelers generously made possible by

Lead sponsor

with additional support from

Lauter McDougal Charitable Fund

Mary Patricia Gannon

Kenneth R. Norgan

Robert Kohl & Clark Pellett

Philip G. Lumpkin

Lyric Unlimited was launched with major catalyst funding from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation and receives major support from the Caerus Foundation, Inc.

An opera by Gregory Spears
Libretto by Greg Pierce
Based on the novel Fellow Travelers
by Thomas Mallon
Developed and co-commissioned by
G. Sterling Zinsmeyer and Cincinnati Opera

Photos: Todd Rosenberg