American Opera Projects Participates in the Brooklyn Public Library's Kwanzaa Project, 12/27-12/28

A native New Yorker of African American and Nigerian descent, Nkeiru Okoye has had her music performed on four continents. Okoye's penchant for infusing popular and non-Western influences in a 'classical' framework shows in her most performed works, SONGS OF HARRIET TUBMAN (2007), PHILLIS WHEATLEY (2005, commissioned by the Boston Landmarks Orchestra, and recorded by the Moscow Symphony), VOICES SHOUTING OUT (2002); RUTH: an Orchestral Choreopoem, (1998); THE GENESIS (1997) and AFRICAN SKETCHES. Okoye's orchestral works have been performed by the Philadelphia, Detroit, St. Louis, Virginia, Grand Rapids, Indianapolis, Mississippi, Richmond, New Jersey Chamber, Cambridge Symphony, Western Piedmont, Rutgers University, Central Jersey, Hopkins, and New Horizons Symphony orchestras. Okoye has gotten awards, commissions and commendations from MEET THE COMPOSER, MetLife Creative Connections, John Duffy Composer Institute, Composer's Collaborative, Inc., Yvar Mikhashov Trust for New Music (1999); and numerous awards by the NAACP. Okoye is a frequent guest lecturer and panelist. In 2005, Okoye was a composer mentor at the University of Ghana for the International Society of Contemporary Music's World New Music Days. In 2007, Okoye was honored at Nigeria's 40under40 ceremony, in Lagos. Nkeiru Okoye (in KEAR roo oh KOY yeh) has BM in composition from Oberlin Conservatory of Music, and an MA and a Ph.D. in theory and composition from Rutgers University. In addition to being a composer, Dr. Okoye is a soft sculpture artist/creator of the "Canbie Collection" of multicultural dolls, which may be found in museums and galleries nationwide, including the Smithsonian.

For 25 years, AOP (American Opera Projects) has been creating, developing and presenting new American opera and music Theatre Projects. AOP, based in Fort Greene, Brooklyn, has produced over 20 world premiere operas including Patience & Sarah (1998), Stefan Weisman's Darkling (2006), Lee Hoiby's This is the Rill Speaking (2008), and Phil Kline's Out Cold (2012), part of BAM's 30th Next Wave Festival. AOP produces concerts and events including presentations of new music at Works and Process at the Guggenheim, the Rubin Museum of Art, and Carnegie Hall. AOP-developed projects include Stephen Schwartz's Séance on a Wet Afternoon (New York City Opera, 2011), Jorge Martín's Before Night Falls (Fort Worth Opera, 2010), Tarik O'Regan's Heart of Darkness (Royal Opera House (UK), 2011), and Jack Perla's Love/Hate (ODC Theater and San Francisco Opera, 2012). Upcoming: Gregory Spears's Paul's Case (UrbanArias, and Roulette, 2013).