Mark Adamo is an American composer and librettist. Born in 1962 in Philadelphia, Adamo is the great-nephew of Rose Thompson Hovick, Mama Rose of Gypsy fame. Because of the family relation, his mother was hesitant to allow him to pursue a career in the arts, but he attended the Dramatic Writing Program at New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts, as well as the Catholic University of America’s Department of Music. In both schools, Adamo was highly celebrated.
Adamo began his career wanting to compose for Broadway musicals, but he eventually turned his attention toward choral and operatic composition. Adamo is most known for his 1998 opera, Little Women, based on the Louisa May Alcott novel of the same name. Little Women premiered at the Houston Grand Opera, and it has since been one of the foremost American operas performed in the last two decades. Little Women is the first American opera to be recorded for high-definition television. Adamo’s other operas include Lysistrata, or the Nude Goddess (based on the Aristophanes play, as well as Sophocles’s Antigone), The Gospel of Mary Magdalene, and Becoming Santa Claus. Adamo is gay and is married to composer John Corigliano. The two live in New York City.