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A new song cycle exploring the realities of life as a black man in America will receive its world premiere performance with Opera Philadelphia in a special one-night-only event on February 20. Cycles of My Being is the work of composer Tyshawn Sorey, a “prodigious multi-instrumentalist and composer” who “transcends the borders of jazz, classical, and experimental music” (New Yorker); lyricist Terrance Hayes, “a vital voice that explores race and art and the roving power of language” (NPR); and Opera Philadelphia Artistic Advisor Lawrence Brownlee, one of “the world’s leading bel canto tenors” (Associated Press).

Premiering in Philadelphia in the Perelman Theater at The Kimmel Center for the Performing Arts in celebration of Black History Month, Cycles of My Being marks a return to the Opera Philadelphia stage for Brownlee, who will be accompanied by four supporting instrumentalists. Immediately following its world premiere, the new song cycle will travel to Chicago for a February 22, 2018 performance presented by Lyric Unlimited/Lyric Opera of Chicago at the DuSable Museum of African American History, before making its New York premiere on April 24, 2018 at Carnegie Hall, where it will be presented as part of the venue’s 125 Commissions Project in Zankel Hall.

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