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Episode 1 in our “Dear Mom” series features a letter from Natalka, a Czech-American woman, to her mother in the far-away Czech Republic.
“Lift Every Voice and Sing,” sometimes referred to as the “Black National Anthem,” is a hymn written in 1900 that is sung in churches across the U.S.A. Its lyrics evoke images of overcoming hardship and acknowledge the sacrifice and toil of those who came before us.
“Wade in the Water” is an African-American spiritual traditionally sung by enslaved peoples and is often associated with the Underground Railroad. These lyrics were used to uplift spirits and encourage resilience during slavery. Ultimately, this is a song about enduring hardship and maintaining strength and faith in the face of injustice.
As you know, we don’t typically use amplification for our voices in opera. However, during this season when we can’t bring our singers together to perform, we have chosen to tell stories of, and with, our community in a new and engaging way. This season is centered on the people of Louisville, Southern Indiana, and Kentucky and how opera tells our stories.
Through our stories, our Amplify Your Voice initiative is projecting the voices of our own community during this pandemic-induced hiatus. During this time when we seek to connect, Kentucky Opera continues to draw our region together through our timeless art form. This project will allow us the opportunity to explore the opera repertoire we love and share opera with other new opera audiences.
One thing that makes our art form resonate through the ages is its expression of the human condition. This season, we have identified three themes that frequently appear in opera as well as in our own lives: Family, Justice, and Faith. Please click on the photos below to see how Kentucky Opera will explore these themes this season.
Kentucky Opera retained its 20/21 artists, stage directors and studio artists to produce and perform original, online artistic content and live, in-person performances as part of its Amplify Your Voice initiative. Please consider a gift to support our season activities.
All families are unique, with stories of pain, joy and hope that deserve to be told. What special moments have defined your family?
Early next year, Kentucky Opera will begin to reveal various aspects of three specific, existing operas that exemplify these three themes, and it will unveil how the operas would be produced on stage.
The 20/21 Amplify Your Voice season will culminate with Kentucky Opera inviting the community to choose which opera theme speaks most prominently to them today.
to support the reimagined season include:
Learn about our new course on the life of composer Giacomo Puccini, or investigate our archived series on the history of opera.
Soprano Ashley Emerson hosts this online video series that includes a lighthearted comparison of opera singers with athletes, artists, and artisans in our community. They compare notes, flaunt their skills, compare secrets of their craft, and share in good-natured competition.