Event—Public Programming

Freedom Ride


When the Congress of Racial Equality comes to New Orleans in the sweltering summer of 1961, Sylvie Davenport is torn. Handed a pamphlet and asked to board a Greyhound bus, Sylvie is forced to choose between her academic future and the future of the nation.

Chicago Opera Theater’s new opera, Freedom Ride, tells Sylvie’s moving story, highlighting how far we’ve come as a country—and how far we still have left to go. In this conversation, critically acclaimed theater director Tazewell Thompson will discuss this groundbreaking new work with Chicago Opera Theater and Staley Music Director Lidiya Yankovskaya. Their discussion will guide viewers through exclusive excerpts from the opera, performed by Freedom Ride stars Lauren Michelle, Cornelius Johnson, and Robert Sims, and provide fascinating insights into the value, challenges, and transformative possibilities of remembering civil rights history through opera.

This event is cosponsored by the Chicago Opera Theater.

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