New York City Opera Presents X, THE LIFE AND TIMES OF MALCOLM X 5/12
On May 12 at 7 pm, at the Schomburg Center (515 Malcolm X Blvd, at 135th St.), New York City Opera will present an abridged concert version of X, THE LIFE AND TIMES OF MALCOLM X, an opera about the great civil rights leader that premiered at City Opera in 1986. Marking 45 years since the assassination of Malcolm X, Composer Anthony Davis, librettist Thulani Davis, and scenarist Christopher Davis will offer insights on their inspiration and creative process.
This special event, which will also include the participation of Classical 105.9 WQXR Host Terrance McKnight, is part of a series of collaborative programs co-presented by New York City Opera and the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture. The cast will feature baritone Sidney Outlaw as Malcolm, soprano Marsha Thompson as Louise/Betty, tenor Robert Mack as Elijah/Street, mezzo-soprano Krysty Swann as Ella, and Bradley Moore, pianist.
New York City Opera and the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture are collaborating on a series of programs following the success of last season's Black History at New York City Opera, co-presented by the two organizations. Their collaboration is part of City Opera's Opera Matters, a series of events combining conversation, media and live music to celebrate opera's connections to the visual arts, film, literature, mass media and pop culture, the African-American experience and the world at large. Curated by City Opera's dramaturg Cori Ellison, Opera Matters brings together prominent artists, scholars and celebrities from diverse artistic and cultural communities to reveal opera's vital place in today's culture. Classical 105.9 WQXR, New York City's sole 24/7 classical music station, is the media sponsor.
The Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture, a research unit of The New York Public Library, is recognized as one of the leading institutions of its kind in the world. A cultural center as well as a repository, this Harlem-based modern research library also sponsors a wide array of interpretive programs, including exhibitions, scholarly and public forums, and cultural performances. For over eighty years The Schomburg Center has collected, preserved, and provided access to materials documenting black life, and promoted the study and interpretation of black history and culture.
Since its founding in 1943, New York City Opera has been recognized as one of America's preeminent cultural institutions, celebrated for its adventurous programming and innovative, risk-taking production style. The company's wide-ranging repertory of 275 works spans five centuries of music and includes 29 world premieres and 61 American and/or New York premieres. The company has been a leading showcase for young artists, helping to launch the careers of more than 3,000 singers. In November 2009, under new General Manager and Artistic Director George Steel, the company inaugurated the newly renovated David H. Koch Theater, the shared home of New York City Opera and New York City Ballet, following a joint $107 million project to refurbish and modernize the theater and enhance both the artistic and visitor experience.