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It may seem odd at first, but considering the larger-than-life drama that constantly surrounds Kanye West, it’s no surprise his next venture is an opera.
On Sunday, the rapper announced on Twitter that he had created and produced his own, titled, Nebuchadnezzar: A Kanye West Opera. That name refers to the Babylonian king, who is a significant figure in the Bible. It’s easy to see why Kanye might find meaning in this historic character: Despite being a successful leader, he was often presumed or predicted to go mad. His image is etched onto the opera invite, which Kanye also tweeted.
The invite notes that Vanessa Beecroft, Kanye’s longtime collaborator, will be directing the show, which will feature music from his gospel collective Sunday Service, Peter Collins and Infinities Song (this last artist could be a typo on the invite that may actually be referring to Infinity’s Song, of whom Kanye is a noted fan).
Kanye referenced Nebuchadnezzar in a recent Beats 1 interview , saying, “(God) is saying, let me take this Nebuchadnezzar-type character. Nebuchadnezzar was the king of Babylon, and he looked at his entire kingdom and said, ‘I did this.’ I stood on the top of the mountain talking about Yeezus, saying, ‘I’m a God,’ I had a guy dressed as Jesus.”
He added, “Nebuchadnezzar was diagnosed with bipolar disorder and he was still king. So not only was I diagnosed with mental illness, but mental illness was something that was used to…to wash me out, to control me.” While bipolar disorder isn’t directly addressed in the Bible, it is arguably alluded to in reference to Nebuchadnezzar.
In any case, the connection to Kanye is clear, who dropped his latest album, Jesus is King , in October alongside an IMAX concert experience, and has been touring the U.S. with Sunday Service.
It’s a busy time for the musician, with the opera scheduled to be performed at the Hollywood Bowl on Nov. 24 — allegedly.
Kanye has promised many things in life: albums, tours, video games, a presidential campaign. Some have come to fruition (often much later after they’ve been announced), but most not at all.
While one hopes the opera will see the light of day — a set date and location are surely a good sign — here is a meagre list of some of his abandoned plans: a redesign of the Calabasas High School uniforms; a furniture collaboration with IKEA; a communications company named after his mother with plans to build branded hovercrafts; a seven-screen home movie theatre; home wallpaper screens; a luxury search engine; low-income housing with a minimalist style to help combat homelessness; an “iPlane” for President Donald Trump; the list — as they say — goes on.
While Kanye’s follow-through may at times be lacking, there’s no denying his lofty and creative aspirations.
If you’re willing to bet on him, you can buy tickets for his opera on Ticketmaster now.
Copyright Postmedia Network Inc., 2019