Classical 91.5

Opera & the Arts Respond to Present-day issues: Join the discussion

Jan 9, 2018

Credit Georgia Public Broadcasting

As a complement to its summer Festival, The Glimmerglass Festival has announced “Breaking Glass,” a series of national forums and a five-episode podcast sparking discussions about how opera and the arts respond to present-day issues. In partnership with Georgia Public Broadcasting (GPB), the inaugural forum will take place on Saturday, January 13, at 2 p.m. in Atlanta. The inaugural forum offers an interactive livestream of the panel to those interested in joining the conversation. To register for the free event, visit

“Breaking Glass” is inspired by Glimmerglass Festival repertory and its recent and upcoming productions that highlight social issues like race, resettlement and homeland.

The national forums, touring in eight cities throughout the United States, explore the evolution of opera and the arts in a changing world.

The forum will be moderated by GPB’s “On Second Thought” host, Celeste Headlee, bringing to light a discussion on the role of art in conversations about race and discrimination in the United States. The panel will feature composer Jeanine Tesori and librettist Tazewell Thompson, whose new opera Blue, an exploration into the impact of prejudice on an American family, will premiere at Glimmerglass in 2019; composer Victor Simonson and librettist Paige Hernandez, who premiered the hip-hopera Stomping Grounds at Glimmerglass in 2017; and music scholar Matthew Morrison of New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts, who will discuss his work about racial identity relating to the sound of American popular music. The national forums are made possible by a grant to The Glimmerglass Festival from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.

Further forum dates and locations will be announced in the coming weeks.

The discussion continues this summer with a five-episode podcast hosted by Paige Hernandez with Tazewell Thompson, co-produced with the WFMT Radio Network in Chicago. The “Breaking Glass” podcast is made possible by an OPERA America Innovation Grant supported by the Ann and Gordon Getty Foundation.

More information and access for the "Breaking Glass" podcast will be available at