Nashville Opera presents ‘The Man Who Mistook His Wife For A Hat’


Nashville Opera explores the mysteries of the human brain, love, and the power of music over both with Michael Nyman’s The Man Who Mistook His Wife For A Hat. Directed by John Hoomes, performances will feature the Nashville Opera Orchestra conducted by Maestro Dean Williamson. The cast of renowned principal opera singers include soprano Rebecca Sjöwall as Mrs. P, bass Matthew Treviño as Dr. P; and tenor Ryan MacPherson as Dr. S, the Neurologist. Performances of The Man Who Mistook His Wife For A Hat will be Friday, November 8 at 8 PM, Saturday, November 9 at 8 PM, and Sunday, November 10 at 2 PM at the award-winning Noah Liff Opera Center in Sylvan Heights. Tickets are available by calling Nashville Opera at (615) 832-5242, the TPAC Box Office at (615) 782-4040, or online at The opera is sung in English with projected lyrics. Story outlines and a detailed study guide are available at Two ticketing levels are available: $35 for Reserved and $50 for Premiere and features cushioned seating courtesy of Music City Tent and Events. 

Composed in 1986 by Michael Nyman (composer of the award-winning score to the Oscar-winning movie The Piano) and adapted from Dr. Oliver Sacks’ best selling book of the same name, the chamber opera is a poignant and sometimes comedic story of a man coping with personal adversity, and his use of the power of music to heal his shattered world.

“Michael Nyman’s opera The Man Who Mistook His Wife For A Hat offers us the chance to take a peek into the sometimes baffling and often extraordinary machinations of the human mind,” said John Hoomes, General and Artistic Director of Nashville Opera. “ In this lesser known, but important opera, we are urged to discern the connection of brain, self, and heart, and, by doing so, uncover the humanity in man’s eternal struggle with adversity.”

Soprano Rebecca Sjöwall made her Nashville Opera debut in the critically-acclaimed The Difficulty of Crossing A Field, but over five million gamers have heard Sjöwall’s voice as the singer of the Rapture Anthem on the popular video games BioShock and BioShock 2. In addition, the pop rock band Sparks asked her to portray the sassy Hollywood Starlet for their album The Seduction of Ingmar Bergman, a role she reprised for a sold-out live performance of the album presented by the L.A. Film Festival. A two-time Society of Singers scholarship recipient, she opened for Smokey Robinson at the 16th Annual ELLA Awards honoring Gladys Knight.

Nashville Opera, in conjunction with neurologist Dr. Jan Brandes, will host Science of the Mind pre-show receptions at 7:15 PM on Friday, November 8 and Saturday, November 9 in the Swensson Patron Room of the Noah Liff Opera Center. Members of the healthcare community, especially those providing neurological and psychological services are invited to enjoy complimentary wine, soft drinks, and hors d’oeuvres before the production of The Man Who Mistook His Wife For A Hat. General and Artistic Director John Hoomes will offer some brief insights into the production during the gathering. Please call Margaret Carpenter at Nashville Opera (615) 832-5242 to make a reservation. Space is limited.