Douglas Cuomo, known for composing, among other things, the irresistibly catchy theme music for the hit sitcom Sex and the City, has now turned his attention to the Indian sub-continent and her rich religious heritage.
In his most recent project, an opera titled Arjuna's Dilemma, Cuomo draws from the Bhagavad Gita to tell on stage the story of Arjuna's epic conversation with Krishna on the battlefield before the start of the Kurukshetra war.
Fusing Hindustani classical music, classical Western music and jazz in telling his story, Cuomo once again displays his knack for combing different and disparate styles into a harmonious blend. The 70-minute piece, not a traditional opera but sharing traits with one, reportedly took the composer roughly eight years to create.
And how has it been received?
Arjuna's Dilemma debuted last week in New York City's Brooklyn borough and was warmly reviewed, for the most part, by both The New York Times and the New York Times Magazine.
The Times called the opera's score 'appealing and unabashedly eclectic'. The NYT Magazine felt the piece is 'a pile of half-realised good ideas' with results that are 'fascinatingly uneven'.