Starring Christopher Burchett, Heather Buck, Hila Plitmann, Anthony Roth Costanzo, Andrew Nolen
Commissioned by Friends of Madame White Snake
Conceived by Charles Jacobs and Cerise Lim Jacobs
Libretti by Cerise Lim Jacobs
Director Michael Counts
Premiered at The Emerson Cutler Majestic in September 2016, presented by Boston Celebrity Series in a Beth Morrison Projects production.
Gilgamesh is the story of Ming, the son of Madame White Snake, half demon-half man who was abandoned during his mother’s epic battle with the Abbot. He is identified with the protagonist of the Sumerian Epic, “Gilgamesh”, who was two-thirds god and one-third man. When the White Snake suddenly sends for him on his thirtieth birthday, he finds her in the form of a beautiful woman imprisoned in the Abbot’s alms bowl. The White Snake reveals his birthright and his power to control the waters. Ming tests his powers and brings the world to the brink of another devastating flood. The Abbot appears and sows the seeds of doubt about his mother. When Ming goes back to see her again, he sees a white snake in the alms bowl. Ming returns home to find that his wife, Ku, has just given birth to a white, iridescent baby girl who resembles her grandmother. He gives the baby to the green snake, Xiao Qing, who had taken him as a baby away from the floodwaters. He returns to the monastery. There is no one there. A robe and empty alms bowl are left. Ming dons the robe, takes the alms bowl and leaves.