I will buy Canterville Chase
at whatever the price.
I'll take the ghost with it...
we reap as we sow!
A true English ghost
is an article most rare,
I'll put under glass:
it will make me a fortune!
My dear Sir... Lord...
business is business!

(from the First Scene)


Il fantasma di Canterville
(The Canterville Ghost)

Sir Simon

Thunderbolts and lightning!
Never in my whole, long vigil
have I been treated with such disrespect!
Scoundrels! Rogues!
Rabble overflowing with good sense,
offending my ancient charisma.

Oh, memorable feats,
glorious disguises,
prodigious apparitions!
If the world is no longer
capable of surprise, what remains?
No crime is greater than vulgarity.

(from the Third Scene)

opera in one act
from Oscar Wilde's story of the same name


Sir Simon of Canterville, the ghost
Mr. Hiram B. Otis, Minister of the United States
Mrs. Lucretia R. Otis, his wife
Miss Virginia E. Otis, their daughter
The Otis twins, their sons
Washington, a friend of the family and Virginia's fiancé
The Butler
Chorus of local people
The action - in one prologue and 9 scenes - takes place
at the Canterville property in England towards the end of the 19th century...

Who doesn't know the "Canterville Ghost"?
This delightful classic from English literature shows us
the encounter and clash between the new American pragmatism and the conservative culture
of old Europe in a manner both shrewd and light.

I re-wrote it in verse,
playing with the musicality of the words.
The music, I am still searching for.

This theatrical adaptation was born as a libretto
for a short Opera or small chamber Musical,
although other uses are not excluded.
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