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Longue Vue is nominated for a 2012 Big Easy Award

Activism & Community, Art & Creative, Events & Nightlife, Louisiana, Music

January 25th, 2012


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In 1961, after the two original buses of Freedom Riders
traveling from Washington DC
to New Orleans were bombed and attacked, and a
large number of student activists were imprisoned in the infamous Mississippi
State Penitentiary in Parchman, hundreds of volunteers from all over the United States
traveled to the South to keep the Civil Rights Movement alive. Freedom Ride, an opera commissioned by Longue
Vue House and Gardens and composed by Dan Shore,
has been nominated by the Big Easy Foundation for “Best Student or Community
Opera”. Winners will be announced at the 18th annual Tribute to the Classical
Arts luncheon Thursday, February 9, 2012, at the Hotel Monteleone. The Tribute
to the Classical Arts recognizes outstanding performances of classical music,
opera, ballet, and ethnic and contemporary dance.

Freedom Ride came about as a
result of a meeting between Dan Shore, a composer and librettist who is also on the
faculty at Xavier University of Louisiana, and Joe Baker, the Executive
Director of Longue Vue, who envisioned a musical work that would celebrate both
New Orleans and
the Civil Rights Movement.

The opera is part of a committed effort by Executive Director Joe Baker to
stimulate Longue Vue’s civic engagement, environmental stewardship and artistic
practice: “Longue Vue is thrilled to be a center for commissioning new works
and enlivening civil discourse in New Orleans, in the tradition of Edith and Edgar Stern.”
In addition to Freedom Ride, Longue Vue has embarked on an ambitious agenda
that stresses the museum’s role as a resource for adult and youth education and
a catalyst for social change.

Shore is the 2011 recipient of
the Gambit’s Big Easy Entertainment Award for Creative Achievement in Opera.
His other operas and plays include An Embarrassing Position, Travel, and The
Beautiful Bridegroom
, which received first prize in the National Opera
Association’s Chamber Opera Composition Competition. He is an alumnus of the
BMI-Lehman Engel Musical Theatre Workshop and a Fulbright scholar; he holds a
B.M. and M.M. from the New England Conservatory and a Ph.D. from the City
University of New York.

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