Photographer Benjamin Perlin is an active volunteer in various charitable organizations, including Habitat for Humanity and Second Harvest Food Bank of Middle Tennessee. During his free time, Benjamin “Ben” Perlin enjoys reading the works of Kurt Vonnegut.
American author Kurt Vonnegut is most famous for his bestselling satirical novel Slaughterhouse-Five, which was released in 1969. In his career, which lasted more than five decades, Vonnegut was able to publish a number of works in different genres, including 14 novels and five plays. One of his plays, Happy Birthday, Wanda June, was adapted into an opera that recently premiered at the Indianapolis Opera.
Written in 1970, Happy Birthday, Wanda June served as Vonnegut’s introduction into playwriting and is his only play published during his lifetime. Although the play was adapted into a Broadway musical in 1970 and a film in 1971, Vonnegut felt that the character of the villains would best be amplified in an opera.
In 2007, just weeks before his death, Vonnegut started collaborating with composer Richard Auldon Clark on the libretto. The September 2016 staging of the opera coincided with the 200th anniversary of the state of Indiana and was endorsed as a legacy project by the Indiana Bicentennial Commission.