Based on the award-winning short story by the late English Poet Laureate
Ted Hughes, the opera is based on two major events. In Act 1
a gigantic Iron Man appears in a small farming community in England.
The villagers are terrified and they respond by digging a deep hole
to catch him and bury him. However, the Iron Man escapes. Two children,
Hogarth and Kelly, try another approach; they invite him to come and
live on the town's scrap-metal yard. Through their courage and trust,
the Iron Man becomes a friend instead of a threat.
2 a colossal Space Being lands on Australia and threatens to eat
all life on earth. The nations of the world attack with weapons; but
the Space Being only smiles at them. Hogarth and Kelly ask the Iron
Man to help. Through a test of strength by fire he subdues the Space
Being, who then agrees to orbit the world singing the Music of the
Spheres. Through the power of music, peace reigns on earth.
Hogarth (boy soprano)
The Iron Man (bass/baritone)
(or piano/synthesiser accompaniment)
Schirmer Inc., New York
"The Iron Man should
take its place along with such enduring works as Benjamin Britten's
and W H Auden's "Paul Bunyan" in a very special category
of operas written for young artists to perform, and young audiences
Opera for Youth Inc, USA
in a sumptuous Wagnerian manner."
State Opera of South Australia
libretto neither patronises nor presumes."
The Adelaide Review