GUEST BLOGGERS Deanna Hoying and Frances Skolnick with Kentucky Opera let us in on this year’s school tour, “BATTLE CRY OF FREEDOM,” and how your help can reach young audiences in Kentucky! Click here to donate to Power2Give.

Adopt a School – BATTLE CRY OF FREEDOM school tour
by Deanna Hoying

Writing a touring program can be tricky.  There are a lot of things to consider, especially when writing for a primarily young, student audience.  Pacing is important and all the content has to fit into about 45 minutes (or less).

And while I’ve written several touring programs before (OH FREEDOM!, WE SING AMERICA, OPERA SOUP), there’s always a moment of “what am I going to write and how can I possibly fit all of it into 45 minutes?”

So when I thought about the upcoming 150th anniversary of the end of the Civil War, it seemed an opportune time to write a special edition touring show featuring the music from that time period.  Again, a moment of panic about how to fit in all that I wanted to say about the Civil War and its music.

Fortunately, I have an amazing writing partner in Stage One’s Andrew Harris.  He’s as big a history buff/geek as I am and little by little, we were able to distill the essence of the Civil War and its music into a really exciting show (Andrew will also be directing the show).

BATTLE CRY OF FREEDOM begins in the decade just prior to the start of the Civil War with the Gold Rush in 1849 (Oh Susanna!).  As we move into the 1850s, we look at the changes in country that led up to the secession of multiple states as well as the firing on Fort Sumter in April 1861.  And we feature music of the North and the South, songs that became identified with both, and close with music that was written in 1951 that was inspired by the conflict.  Performed by the Studio Artists of Kentucky Opera, BATTLE CRY OF FREEDOM reminds us not only of those who fought and died, but also of those who returned to help rebuild our nation.

by Frances Skolnick


Kentucky Opera has partnered with The Fund for the Arts’ innovative program, Power2Give, to try and maximize the impact our 2014/15 School Tour, BATTLE CRY OF FREEDOM, will have on education and the quality of life throughout our community, especially on under-funded schools which might not otherwise be able to participate in the School Tour.

Power2Give offers us the opportunity to post unique giving options online; it offers donors a chance to see their dollars grow exponentially.  Each time a donor commits funds through Power2Give, they are matched from an available pool of corporate, government, and foundation dollars, effectively doubling the gift.

To learn more about helping fund this project, which we are calling Adopt a School and Give Students the Gift of Opera, through Power2Give,  please click here.