The Wilma Theater staging world premiere of 'Hilma' through June 23

BySteph Walton WPVI logo
Monday, June 10, 2024
World premiere of 'Hilma' at The Wilma Theater through June 23
The Wilma Theater is receiving a Regional Theatre Tony Award on June 16, and right now you can catch a world premiere of a show they're staging called 'Hilma.'

PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) -- The Wilma Theater continues to make history with the new, three-part contemporary opera, "Hilma."

Morgan Green, one of the Co-Artistic Directors at The Wilma Theater, is directing the production.

"This show is about Hilma af Klint, abstract painter and mystic," says Green. "And is just now recently being sort of rediscovered and celebrated."

The show focuses on Klint and her séance group.

"They called themselves De Fem, which means 'The Five,'" says Green.

J Molière plays the role of Anna Cassel, an artist and one of De Fem. She describes them as an "intergenerational group of women" who hold séances every week for 10 years.

"And through this practice came an enormous body of work, these incredible abstract paintings in bright colors," says Green.

Cassel was both a collaborator and romantic partner of Klint.

"Anna is part of how Hilma learns to not give up on herself," says Molière.

Though Klint had a vision, it was not always understood.

"And she decides, you know what? I'm going to do it anyways," says Green. "And somehow she knew we were going to appreciate her paintings in the future."

Act I is told through a biographical lens. Kristen Sieh plays the title character, Hilma af Klint.

"She channeled messages from the higher beings to create her art," says Sieh.

Act II, you're transported inside one of Klint's séances.

"It's also an invitation to have a more spiritual kind of heart-opening experience," says Green.

"And then Act III is a completely sung talk back," says Molière.

"Musical lovers will really enjoy it," says Green.

"There's gospel in it," says Molière. "There's some rock."

"There's a lot to enjoy," says Green, adding that it's also an opportunity to "shine a light on this queer, female painter."

"Hilma" runs at The Wilma Theater through June 23.

Hilma | Tickets

The Wilma Theater

265 S. Broad Street

Philadelphia, PA 19107