Opera Librettist

A Thousand Splendid Suns

Music by Sheila Silver. Adapted from the novel by Khaled Hosseini.

Opera in Two Acts. Commissioned by the Seattle Opera. World Premiere February, 25 2023
Full Orchestral Version, MainStage McCaw Hall


Hosseinis novel, here adapted by librettist Stephen Kitsakos, working closely with composer Silver, achieves the ideal with lyrics that are natural yet elevated, both specific and universal, poetry that is the spine of operatic storytelling.Opera Wire

“The opera brought lyrical, beautiful music to a poignant tale on the McCaw Hall Stage.”The Seattle Times

“Haunting and beautiful, the story and music merge as one in this formidable show.”Broadway World

A Thousand Splendid Suns reaffirms the human connection that crosses cultures and that may, in this era of extreme polarization, be our last hope.”Music America Worldwide

Set in contemporary Afghanistan from the mid-1960’s to the American invasion in 2001, A Thousand Splendid Suns is the story of two Islamic women, born a generation apart, one an uneducated bastard child and the other an educated modern beauty. Each is forced into marriage with the same brutal man, fifteen years apart. Cold to one another at first, they grow to develop a bond in a loving mother-daughter relationship and make heroic sacrifices for one another as their husband’s abuse mounts and civil war surrounds them. The two heroines emerge as a symbol of the universal bond that exists between women. A Thousand Splendid Suns celebrates the triumph of the human spirit.

Khaled Hosseini’s novels The Kite Runner and A Thousand Splendid Suns have sold more than 10 million copies in the United States and more than 38 million copies worldwide in over 70 countries. His other works include And The Mountains Echoed & Sea Prayer.

The World Premiere was Directed by the award-winning Afghan filmmaker Roya Sadat and conducted by Viswa Subbaraman.

Learn More at Seattle Opera



Promotional Trailer for Seattle Opera World Premiere
”But Laila you know"
”Honor and pride, that is what I live for"
”I shall miss the moons that shimmer on her roofs"
”How quietly we endure all that falls upon us"