I, Too, Sing America

A Celebration of African American Artists and Athletes

February 15, 2018, 7:00 PM

Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History
315 E Warren Ave
Detroit, MI 48201 (directions)

Please join Michigan Opera Theatre for an evening of compelling conversation, beautiful music, and the unveiling of a brand-new touring production that looks closely at the African American experience in music and sports.

As Michigan Opera Theatre prepares for the May Detroit premiere of The Summer King—a new opera that takes on the life, accomplishments, and struggles of Negro League’s baseball star Josh Gibson—we offer this unique presentation as a way for our community to dig deeper into discussions of equity and inclusion. Beginning with a panel discussion featuring musicologist and University of Michigan professor Mark Clague and renowned baritone Mark Rucker, among others, the evening will continue with excerpts from I, Too, Sing America, a new work by MOT’s Department of Education and Community programs. Using elements of opera, poetry, narrative, and video, this innovative presentation highlights the stories and achievements of African American artists and athletes who defied limitations and paved the way for integration in their fields.

Through the lens of opera and baseball – two seemingly different worlds which have in common thrilling spectacle and incredible feats, but which are both marred by a history of segregation–speakers, performers, and audience will consider: What have these two worlds traditionally meant for African American individuals and communities? How have arts and sports played a role in bridging racial divides and promoting healing? And how do we, today, move toward a fuller incorporation of those pursuits in our world?

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