Stephen King's The Shining Adapted Into a Opera

Over the years, many famous books have been adapted into operas—The Great Gatsby, Lolita, and The Handmaid’s Tale, to name a few. Most recently, Stephen King fans were able to check out a musical adaptation of The Shining, performed by the Minnesota Opera in the state’s capital city of St. Paul last week, NPR reports.

Sadly, the two-hour show only ran from May 7 to 15, and no future performances have been officially announced. However, if sold-out tickets and glowing reviews are any indication, opera lovers who missed The Shining’s premiere run might someday be able to enjoy future performances of the production.

Curious how The Shining made it from page to stage? A few years ago, Minnesota Opera’s artistic director, Dale Johnson, and stage director Eric Simonson decided they wanted to commission a horror opera, MinnPost reports. (The Shining is part of the Minnesota Opera’s New Works Initiative, an initiative to lure new audiences by backing and premiering fresh new operas.)

Simonson suggested The Shining, and composer Paul Moravec and librettist Mark Campbell were hired to transform the quirky idea into a reality. Eventually, the creative duo received approval from King to adapt his best-selling 1977 novel into opera form.

The production isn’t based on Stanley Kubrick’s similarly-titled 1980 movie starring Jack Nicholson—mainly because “the movie is not operatic at all,” Campbell told MinnPost. “There’s no journey of any character.” However, he “went back and read the novel and thought, ‘This is a very exciting idea for an opera.’”

The opera’s libretto is faithful to the novel’s plot. It tells the story of Jack Torrance, a recovering alcoholic who slowly descends into madness while working as winter caretaker at the haunted Overlook Hotel in the Colorado Rockies. While snowed in after a bad winter storm, the hotel’s spirits urge him to kill his wife and son. According to Moravec and Campbell, their adaptation is just as scary—if not more so—than the book.

The Shining sold out weeks before its first performance on May 7. However, you can still listen to snippets of the show via the video above, courtesy of Classicalite.

[h/t NPR]

Banner image courtesy of iStock.

© 2017 USPS
Pop Culture
Speedy Delivery: Mister Rogers Will Get His Own Stamp in 2018
© 2017 USPS
© 2017 USPS

USPS 2018 Mister Rogers stamp
© 2017 USPS

After weeks of mailing out this year’s holiday cards, postage might be the last thing you want to think about. But the U.S. Postal Service has just given us a sneak peek at the many iconic people, places, and things that will be commemorated with their own stamps in 2018, and one in particular has us excited to send out a few birthday cards: Mister Rogers.

In celebration of the 50th anniversary of Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood, Fred Rogers’s groundbreaking PBS series that the USPS says “inspired and educated young viewers with warmth, sensitivity, and honesty,” the mail service shared a mockup of what the final stamp may look like. On it, Rogers—decked out in one of his trademark colorful cardigans (all of which were hand-knitted by his mom, by the way)—smiles for the camera alongside King Friday XIII, ruler of the Neighborhood of Make-Believe.

Though no official release date for Fred’s forever stamp has been given, Mister Rogers is just one of many legendary figures whose visages will grace a piece of postage in 2018. Singer/activist Lena Horne will be the 41st figure to appear as part of the USPS’s Black Heritage series, while former Beatle John Lennon will be the face of the newest Music Icons collection. Sally Ride, the first American woman in space, will also be honored.

Can You Spot the Christmas Pudding?

Whether it’s a sheep hanging out with Santa Claus or a panda bear hiding among some snowmen, regular Mental Floss readers know that hidden picture brainteasers are one of our favorite things. And the optical experts at have released a delicious one, just in time for Christmas. Somewhere in the midst of all these holiday-themed goodies above, there’s a holiday pudding just waiting to be discovered. Can you spot it? Your time starts … now.

If you give up, or are the kind of person who reads the last page of a book before the first one and just wants to know the answer, scroll down to see where it’s hiding.



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