Stanford Live and the Hopkins Center for the Arts at Dartmouth College have commissioned this new collaboration by Stanford faculty composer Jonathan Berger, librettist Vievee Francis, and visual artist Enrico Riley, directed by Niegel Smith. A reflection on the murder of Eric Garner and the legacy of police brutality, The Ritual of Breath Is the Rite to Resist is rooted in seven poetic movements and scored for soprano (Neema Bickersteth), tenor saxophone (Greg Ward), and chamber ensemble, and features dance, immersive projections, and a local chorus. An opera, a participatory action, and a community ritual, this bold activist opera invites audiences to rise up against the theft of Black breath, to meditate on our shared humanity, and to join in the agency of shared resistance.
Generously supported by the Stanford Live Commissions and Programming Fund.
Commissioned, developed, and produced by The Hopkins Center for the Arts at Dartmouth and co-commissioned by Stanford Live.