TRADE / Mary Motorhead

Emma O'Halloran
Past event


A powerful double bill by Irish composer Emma O’Halloran.

In the compelling monodrama Mary Motorhead, a convicted murderer invites us to hear her secret history—the disappointments and betrayals that shaped her life—in the hope that it may shine some light upon the darkness of her actions. Mezzo-soprano Naomi Louisa O’Connell stars as the woman pushed to the edge by circumstance, now finding the road back to herself. 

TRADE is the story of a rent boy and his closeted client in working-class Dublin, both trapped within their own lives. Meeting secretly in a cheap hotel, they wrestle with their own inner demons and their need for each other. Three-time Tony nominee Marc Kudisch (star of LA Opera’s Wonderful Town and anatomy theater) portrays a family man whose world is crumbling apart, with international recording artist Kyle Bielfield as a young hustler determined to take charge of his future.


Please note: Mary Motorhead / TRADE contains haze, strobe lights and mature content.

The program includes post-show talks with members of the cast and creative team on April 27-30.

[Emma O’Halloran has written] some of the most unencumbered, authentic, and joyful music that I have heard in recent years.

Amanda Cook, Editor-in-Chief of I Care If You Listen

Mary Motorhead / TRADE is presented with LA Opera.

LA Opera Off Grand productions are supported by a consortium of generous donors to LA Opera’s Contemporary Opera Initiative, chaired by Barry and Nancy Sanders.

about the artist

Emma O’Halloran

Emma O’Halloran is an Irish composer and vocalist. Freely intertwining acoustic and electronic music, O’Halloran has written for folk musicians, chamber ensembles, turntables, laptop orchestra, symphony orchestra, film, and theater. For her efforts, she has been praised by I Care If You Listen editor-in-chief Amanda Cook for writing “some of the most unencumbered, authentic, and joyful music that I have heard in recent years,” and has won numerous competitions, including National Sawdust’s inaugural Hildegard competition and the Next Generation award from Beth Morrison Projects.

O’Halloran’s music aims to capture the human experience, exploring complex emotions felt in specific moments in time. This approach has found a wide audience: Her work has been featured at the international Classical NEXT conference in Rotterdam, the Prototype Festival and MATA Festival (New York), and Bang on a Can Summer Music Festival (Massachussetts). Additionally, her music has been performed by Crash Ensemble, Contemporaneous, Khemia Ensemble, ~Nois Saxophone Quartet, the Refugee Orchestra Project, PRISM Saxophone Quartet, and the RTÉ National Symphony Orchestra, among others.

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cast & creative team

Composed by Emma O’Halloran

Libretto by Mark O’Halloran

Conducted by Elaine Kelly

Directed by Tom Creed 

Performances by Naomi Louisa O’Connell, Marc Kudisch, Kyle Bielfield

Scenic Design by Jim Findlay

Costume Design by Montana Levi Blanco

Lighting Design by Christopher Kuhl

Sound Engineering by Garth MacAleavey

Creative Producer: Beth Morrison Projects