"You know, the thing that's really remarkable about that book for the time period in which it was written is the improvisational, free-flowing nature of it. He goes from straight prose to something like love poetry to setting up scenes as though this were a play--and then, back again!"
I particularly like that this interview with Jake Heggie and Gene Scheer is prefaced (at least, at the time of writing, one assumes it will be corrected at some point) "A discussion with composer Jake Heggie and librettist Jake Heggie about the upcoming world-premiere production of Moby-Dick for The Dallas Opera." Personally, my favorite part of Melville's text is Chapter 55, "Of the Monstrous Pictures of Whales," in which mistakes in depicting whales are discussed. Chapter 56, "Of the Less Erroneous Pictures of Whales, and the True Pictures of Whaling Scenes," is slightly less amusing. Doubtless these chapters will not appear in the opera, but one can live in hope.
Heggie/Scheer Interview | Dallas Opera | Moby-Dick Online