RANDALL ENG founded and leads the NYU/Tisch Opera Lab with director Sam Helfrich. Under their guidance, student composers and librettists from the Graduate Musical Theatre Writing Program have created more than 30 short operas in collaboration with American Opera Projects, the New School, and partner organizations the Stonewall Inn, the Brooklyn Museum, International House, and the Fort Greene Park Conservancy.
Randall’s own music lies at the intersection of opera, music-theatre, and jazz. His opera Florida (libretto by Donna Di Novelli, directed by Kevin Newbury) premiered in 2018 at UrbanArias in Washington, DC, after development at Lyric Opera Cleveland, New York City Opera’s VOX Festival, and the Public Theater. His opera Henry’s Wife (libretto by Alexis Bernier) has been developed and presented by the Center for Contemporary Opera, American Opera Projects, the Virginia Arts Festival, and Manhattan School of Music.
His latest opera with Donna Di Novelli is Before the Night Sky. A contemporary re-telling of the Greek myth of Castor and Pollux collided with the stories of their twin sisters Helen of Troy and Clytemnestra, Before the Night Sky was featured at Opera America’s New Opera Showcase at Town Hall in 2017 and is in development at American Opera Projects.
In 2019, the Boston Pops premiered his work Harbor, a collaboration with U.S. Poet Laureate Tracy K. Smith for soprano and orchestra. His choral work Remain, a found-text setting of a “Know Your Rights” immigration pamphlet, was commissioned and premiered at Cooper Union in 2018 by the MasterVoices Chorale, Ted Sperling conducting. Other works include The Dangers of Electric Lighting (Luna Stage), the video opera The Woman in the Green Coat (Edinburgh Fringe Festival), and commissions for Albany Symphony Orchestra’s Dogs of Desire, Mirror Visions Ensemble, and the Composer’s Voice.
Projects for 2020-21 include a setting of the Walt Whitman poem “As for me” for Mirror Visions Ensemble (premiering in April at Merkin Concert Hall), and a new musical adaptation of the Hong Kong film Infernal Affairs with the bookwriter/lyricist Sung-il Ko, which will premiere in South Korea in Fall 2021.
He has been awarded grants, prizes, and residencies from the Civitella Ranieri Foundation, the Montalvo Arts Center, the Ucross Foundation, the Bang on a Can Summer Institute, the John Duffy Composers Institute at the Virginia Arts Festival, Boston Metro Opera, American Opera Projects, the Eugene O’Neill Music Theatre Conference, Tapestry Opera, New Dramatists, the American Music Center, and the American Composers Forum.
Randall is a graduate of Harvard University, Cambridge University, and NYU/Tisch’s Graduate Musical Theatre Writing Program, where he is now an Associate Arts Professor. A Staten Island native and Jeopardy! champion, he can be found at www.randalleng.com.