Theodore Chanler: The Pot of Fat

Dixie Stewart (soprano); Arthur Burrows (baritone); Bruce Abel (baritone);
CRI Chamber Orchestra; Jorge Mester, conductor

There is a grandeur about Theodore Chanler's The Pot of Fat which makes this domestic tragedy larger than life. Yet the husband in the opera is a cat and his wife is a mouse.

The libretto is based on a Grimm fairy tale, The Cat and the Mouse in Partnership. The plot is simple. A cat and mouse live together happily while the cat cheats the mouse. When the mouse discovers the cat’s duplicity, he devours her in his rage.

Although librettist Hester Pickman has kept to the original outline of the story, she has taken the short, stark tale and changed it from a Grand Guignol horror-thriller into a philosophical drama. At the end of The Pot of Fat, one is not shocked, but saddened, as when witnessing the conclusion of a friend’s unhappy marriage. She has transformed the cat and mouse into believable human beings. Her characters are not good or bad, but like people, they are good or wrong, or even good and wrong.

This is borne out in Chanler’s own description of the cat, the mouse, and the narrator—the opera’s total cast: “. . . they are really people—Cat an attractive ruffian, Mouse a gentle, appealing little fool, perhaps, I should add appetizing.” About the Narrator he wrote, “ we think of him as representing Nature itself—or Fate, or Fortune, whatever you want to call it. . . . ”

 

This title from the CRI LP back catalog has been carefully transferred from the original master tape, and is now available from New World Records as an on-demand CD (CD-R). It can also be downloaded in MP3/320, FLAC and/or WAV format(s).

We have preserved the original CRI LP catalog number for this title, preceded by the prefix NWCRL, to distinguish previously unavailable back catalog titles from those later reissued by CRI on compact disc.

***Please note that the newly-digitized CRI LP titles are priced at $12.99 (multiples excepted) and are not included in any of the special offers.***

Dixie Stewart

Theodore Chanler: The Pot of Fat

MP3/320 $9.99
FLAC $9.99
WAV $9.99
CD $12.99

Track Listing

The Pot of Fat: Prologue ‰ÛÒ Scene 1
Theodore Chanler
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The Pot of Fat: Scene 2
Theodore Chanler
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The Pot of Fat: Scene 3
Theodore Chanler
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The Pot of Fat: Scene 4
Theodore Chanler
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The Pot of Fat: Scene 5
Theodore Chanler
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The Pot of Fat: Scene 6
Theodore Chanler
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The Pot of Fat: Epilogue
Theodore Chanler
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