On March 4, 2022, it will be opening night at the opera. The show is a world-premiere stage production of an American opera: Sanctuary Road. It has been such a pleasure to be able to work on this historic piece of art with the North Carolina Opera.
Most of us learn about the Underground Railroad in school. We learn, primarily, about one famous conductor, Harriet Tubman. Sanctuary Road is based on the experience of another abolitionist and conductor of The Road, William Still. Still carefully chronicled his work on The Road with the hope of reuniting families. He helped hundreds of enslaved people find freedom.
Sanctuary Road gives us a glimpse into the experience of The Road as told by those who lived it. It reminds us that history often gives us a limited view of events and that in the fight for freedom and justice there are many heroes.
I love that I get to sing in this production and lead by example for my students by taking part in community cultural events. As a singer, it is exciting to have an opportunity to be a part of the opera; as a descendant of enslaved people, it is a privilege to be able to tell their story. I hope all of you will have the opportunity to take part in this historic event. An American opera for our time: Sanctuary Road.
Stay well and I’ll see you at the opera.