American Opera Projects

AOP and Opera on Tap return to Galapagos Art Space for the latest installment in this ongoing series that brings the best of contemporary opera to one of Brooklyn's most innovative art venues.

Opera Grows in Brooklyn risks never going back as we feature a collection of great operatic works from contemporary African Americans.


Harriet Tubman: When I Crossed That Line to Freedom

Composer Nkeiru Okoye presents excerpts from her two-act folk opera Harriet Tubman: When I Crossed That Line to FreedomHarriet Tubman tells the story of the legendary Underground Railroad engineer (soprano Jasmine Muhummad) as she grows from a girl born in slavery into the woman who would lead more than 70 people to freedom. Based on recent Tubman biographies, the story encompasses the universal themes of sisterhood, courage, sacrifice and family bonds. Harriet Tubman showcases Okoye’s penchant for infusing popular and non-Western influences in a ‘classical’ framework.
Conductor: Eli Spindel
violin: Jennifer Axelson / violin II: Molly Fletcher
viola: Brian Thompson / cello: Alice Hamlet
contrabass: Morton Cahn / piano: Mila Henry
Directed by Beth Greenberg.

An Evening in the Harlem Renaissance

Soprano Adrienne Danrich performs excerpts from her new live-documentary, An Evening in the Harlem Renaissance, a musical celebration one of the most exciting times in American history for African American writers, composers, artists and performers. Harlem Renaissance poet Langston Hughes is one of the most notable figures of that era and has inspired many composers throughout the decades with his lyrical style of writing. Danrich showcases the many and varied settings of Hughes’ poems in songs by Margaret Bonds, John Musto, Ricky Ian Gordon as well as the New York premiere of five new settings of Hughes’ poems composed by Drew Hemenger, which were commissioned by Danrich and The Lively Arts Concert Series at Indiana University Pennsylvania. With bass-baritone Isaac Grier. Piano: Mila Henry

David N. Baker's "Give and Take"

Opera on Tap is pleased to present Give and Take, a chamber work for soprano and ensemble by a true Renaissance man.
Dr. David Baker is a virtuoso performer on multiple instruments and top in his field in several disciplines. He is also the conductor and musical & artistic director of the Smithsonian Jazz Masterworks Orchestra. He is a Grammy nominee as well as a Pulitzer prize nominee and was recently honored by the Kennedy Center with their Living Jazz Legend Award. As a composer Mr. Baker has been commissioned by more than 500 individuals and ensembles. His compositions total more than 2,000 in number, including jazz and symphonic works, chamber music, and ballet and film scores.

Give and Take (1975)
Poems by Terence Diggory; Commissioned by Edith Diggory
Featuring Malesha Jessie, soprano
Conductor: Christian McLeer
cello: Kate Spingarn
viola: Alissa Smith
alto flute: Patricia Blackman
english horn/ oboe: Katie Scheele
percussion: Russell Greenberg


Sunday, June 12 - 7:00 p.m.
Galapagos Art Space
16 Main Street (corner of Water St.)
Brooklyn, NY 11201


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American Opera Projects, Inc. • 138 South Oxford Street, Brooklyn, NY 11217
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