Artists for Humanity building, Boston Lyric Opera
by James MacMillan
directed by Andrew Eggert, music director David Angus
immersive environment Julia Noulin-Mérat, lights Carl Wiemann,
costumes Nancy Leary, wigs make-up Jason Allen, dramaturg John Conklin
Hagar, soprano MICHELLE TRAINOR †
Abraham, baritone DAVID KRAVITZ
Traveler, tenor NEAL FERREIRA ‡
Traveler, tenor SAMUEL LEVINE*
Traveler, baritone DAVID MCFERRIN †
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A Potent Biblical Bargain, Undermined
The Wall Street Journal- Feb 11, 2013
Set designer Julia Noulin-Mérat ingeniously enclosed the Artists for Humanity space—a large, multistory atrium—by hanging fabric on the walls. The audience surrounded a 
central platform that had a "tree" constructed of wood planks and chairs arching over it. Small additional sets—a 
kitchen, a bedroom, a sitting room with a television—were ranged around the walls, behind the spectators; characters withdrew to them when they were not singing.

“Clemency” at the Boston Lyric Opera Annex
by Debra Cash - Feb 09 2013
...There is a coup de theatre at the heart of 
production Boston Lyric Opera (BLO) Annex’s of James MacMillan’s brief opera,Clemency....  The vast space had 
been outfitted by designer Julia Noulin-Merat—who by report has inspired at least one ambitious young person involved in Artists for Humanity‘s program to seriously 
consider a career in set design—with a pale, wooden thrust platform overhung with scattered planks to evoke a shady tree and two small interior sets on side platforms, one 
holding a small bed, the other an almost-modern “living room” outfitted with twin rocking chairs, a patchwork quilt, and a television with rabbit ears...

BLO’s Opera Annex premieres MacMillan’s ‘Clemency’
By Jeremy Eichler
Boston Globe - FEBRUARY 07, 2013
...BLO’s sets by Julia Noulin-Mérat suggest an appealing mix of simplicity and fantasy. The action plays out mostly on a plain rectangular stage surrounded on all sides by the audience, but much of the visual space is dominated by the branches of an enormous tree made from a jumble of  different scraps of wood and old furniture...

James MacMillan's Clemency receives its North American 
première in Boston
by Susan Blood 11th February 2013
...The new production is perfect for the venue, with sets by Julia Noulin-Mérat, costumes by Nancy Leary, and lighting by Carl Wiemann.The metal walls of the center’s gallery were dampened in white tarps and sheets of grey 
felt. In the center of the room was a raised wooden stage, with reclaimed wood suspended over it like a stop-action 
explosion – or the bough of a tree. That is the nature of Clemency. It’s the balance between the Tree of Life and an explosion. The travelers arrive as prophetic angels bringing word of new life, and leave as vengeful messengers of destruction.

The audience was seated in four sections, surrounding the stage. In the corners, between the sections of seating, additional staging held three vignettes: a child’s bed with a few wooden toys; two rocking chairs with a rabbit-ear topped television; a simple kitchen table where Sarah stood shelling peas. Supernumeraries inhabited these side 
stages, portraying Sarah and Abraham as the story unfolded, adding dimension to their characters and filling out the history. The action wove through the audience with 
layers of storytelling...The orchestra was placed off to the side, behind a flight of metal stairs. Throughout the opera, music and voices came from unexpected places, adding to the sense of disconnect while weaving the story together from different angles...

Review: ''Clemency,'' Boston Lyric Opera's new commission
the Phoenix - February 20, 2013
..Happily, one performance was added (February 11), and intrepid patrons brave ice and slush and Boston's parking ban to get to South Boston's sleek Artists for Humanity EpiCenter, a remarkable venue for inner-city student artists, some of whom participated in the creation of Julia Noulin-Mérat's intriguing semi-abstract set — mainly "tree" made of planks and wooden chairs arching over a simple central platform (surrounded by the audience)...