IHOS Opera (Greek for 'sound') was founded in 1990 by composer and artistic director Constantine Koukias and production director Werner Ihlenfeld. Their experimental music theatre challenges both audience and artist through striking contemporary operas blending voice, dance, and sound with installation and digital technology. It explores cross-cultural influences to create innovative vast-scale works, and performs in unconventional industrial venues. Major operas have included Days and nights with Christ (1993) and Mikrovion (1994).
In 1996, to commemorate its sixtieth anniversary, the Associated Pulp and Paper Mills at Burnie commissioned Pulp, an industrial opera, and 2001 saw Sea chant – settlers, ships and sawhorses, a community opera telling the history of the east coast. Established in 2000, IHOS Music Theatre Laboratory develops music theatre skills of young Tasmanians through developing choral and dramatic works complete with movement, staging and lighting.
Further reading: IHOS Chronicle 1/1, 2000; www.ihosopera.com.