American Premiere

Have A Good Day!

January 15-19, 2014 at HERE's Mainstage Theatre

Have A Good Day! is minimalistic and conceptual work for 10 singing cashiers, supermarket sounds and piano.


The plot of the opera by composer Lina Lapelytė and librettist Vaiva Grainytė, directed by Rugilé Bardziukaité, is set around the inner lives of cashiers in a shopping centre: shows what lies behind their mechanical “Good afternoon!“, “Thank you!“, “Have a good day!” and fake smile. Faceless, robot-like shop workers found in everyday life are transformed into unique and lively characters; their secret thoughts and biographies are turned into short, personal dramas. The characters of different saleswomen, embodying universal archetypes, convey predominant social landscape. The libretto is a revealing mosaic of spoken, literary language and documentary.


The atmosphere of the supermarket is established by glinting and buzzing installation of the daylight lamps and environmental sounds, connecting the audience space and the stage with 10 cashiers. The set itself is very minimalistic: real goods – sort of obligatory decoration of a shopping center – exist only in acoustic and verbal form.


The monotonous beep that happens every time an item is being scanned is a key sound through the whole opera. It gets louder and quieter but it is always present. Songs that accompany the beeping are as monotonous as the process of shopping and selling. Instead of becoming the main point of the opera, music serves the thoughts of the cashiers – it facilitates their voice.


To avoid any moral or condemnatory suggestion, a critical attitude towards capitalism is expressed through humor, paradox, irony and poetry. The mosaic of different destinies is transformed into one poem suggesting the pleasure of consumption.


Have A Good Day! was premiered at the CAC (Contemporary Art Center), Vilnius in 2011 at the 4th. NOA (New Opera Action) festival produced by OPEROMANIJA. In 2013 it was further developed in part with funds from Lithuanian Ministry of Culture and was selected by an International Theatre Institute (ITI) jury for presentation at final “Music Theatre NOW 2013” competition (Biennial for Performing Arts, Jönköping, Sweden), where the work was awarded Globe Teana-Theatre Observation prize.


Have A Good Day! received funding from the Trust for Mutual Understanding.


Supported by the Ministry of Culture of Lithuania


Photos by Noah Stern Weber.

Performed by:
Svetlana Bagdonaite (Cashier)
Liucina Blazevic (Cashier)
Veronika Cicinskaite-Golovanova (Cashier)
Lina Dambrauskaite (Cashier)
Kristina Svolkinaite (Cashier)
Rima Soviene (Cashier)
Lina Valioniene (Cashier)
Vida Valuckiene (Cashier)
Milda Zapolskaite (Cashier)
Rita Raciuniene (Cashier)


Pianist: Kestutis Pavalkis (Security)


Lighting Design: Eugenijus Sabaliauskas