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Assembly Series

A tradition of convening thought leaders since 1953

McKelvey School of Engineering

Belonging in Opera: Learning from Our Past, Engaging with Our Future

Tuesday, April 13 | 5:30 PM - 7:30 PM

Virtual Event

Join co-presenters Opera Theatre of Saint Louis and Washington University’s Center for the Study of Race, Ethnicity, & Equity for “Belonging in Opera: Learning from Our Past, Engaging with Our Future.” This two-night symposium, led by Naomi André, will explore the history of Black composers and the current and future landscape of Black creativity in opera and adjacent spaces.

Register for the event here.

Event Type

Concerts & Performances


Arts & Culture



Center for the Study of Race, Ethnicity & Equity
Event Contact

Tila Neguse

Speaker Information

Naomi André is a professor in the Department of Afroamerican and African Studies, Women’s and Gender Studies, and the Residential College at the University of Michigan. She received her B.A. from Barnard College and M.A. and doctorate (Music: Musicology) from Harvard University. Her research focuses on opera and issues surrounding gender, voice, and race in the US, Europe, and South Africa. Her publications include topics on Italian opera, Schoenberg, women composers, and teaching opera in prisons. Her book, Black Opera: History, Power, Engagement (University of Illinois Press, 2018) won the Lowens Book Award from the Society for American Music and Judy Tsou Critical Race Studies Award from the American Musicological Society. Her earlier books include Voicing Gender: Castrati, Travesti, and the Second Woman in Early Nineteenth-Century Italian Opera (2006) and Blackness in Opera (2012, co-edited collection). She has edited and contributed to clusters of articles in African Studies and the Journal of the Society for American Music. Currently she is a co-editor for the essay collection African Performance Arts and Political Acts (University of Michigan Press, forthcoming in 2022). She is the inaugural Scholar in Residence at the Seattle Opera and a founding member of the Black Opera Research Network (BORN).

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