Interwoven with Malcolm X's own words, Thulani Davis's revised libretto is as fierce as it is compassionate, matching composer Anthony Davis's weaving of art and vernacular music into a profound whole.
Jennifer Goltz-Taylor, Opera News
X: The Life and Times of Malcolm X returns to the opera stage next month at Opera Omaha in Tony Award-nominee Robert O'Hara’s critically acclaimed production. Created by Pulitzer Prize-winning composer Anthony Davis and librettist Thulani Davis on a story by Christopher Davis, X premiered at New York City Opera in 1986, where it was both a critical and box office success. “When I created the music of X, I felt a sense of Musical freedom that liberated me from the confines of genre or the musical boundaries that segregated music into oppressive categories.” said the composer.
If you missed the production in May 2022 at Detroit, come see it in Omaha, Malcolm X’s birthplace. Performances are November 4 and 6 at Omaha’s Orpheum Theater. The cast features Adam Richardson in the title role of Malcolm; Gil Rose conducts.
Opera Omaha is a co-producer in partnership with Detroit Opera, The Metropolitan Opera in New York, Lyric Opera of Chicago, and Seattle Opera.
The Boston Modern Orchestra Project released a new recording of the work in October 2022. Conducted by Gil Rose, the recording features Bass-baritone Davóne Tines as Malcolm, Soprano Whitney Morrison, Mezzo-soprano Ronnita Miller, Tenor Victor Robertson, and Baritone Joshua Conyers.
The opera’s narrative sketches the galvanic life and career of the African American minister and activist Malcolm X, in a series of fast-moving vignettes that trace his trajectory from hate to love.