The New Orleans Opera Organization (NOOA) has been announced as a recipient of the $25.000 Grants for Arts Projects award the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA). This grant will support the southern premiere of Tony Award-winning composer Jeanine Tesori and NAACP Theatre Award-winning librettist Tazewell Thompson’s two-act opera, Blue, with the LA Philharmonic Orchestra. Focd on the topic of police violence, the opera outlines a tragedy in an African-American family in Harlem amid the son’s growing outrage over police intimidation of youthful black men. The opera premiered at the two thousand nineteen Glimmerglass Festival and was the recipient of the Music Critics Organization of N America (MCANA) two thousand twenty Award for Best New Opera.
“Blue, an all-too-timely legend of one family’s devastating loss—the teenage son of a black police officer is killed by a white police officer—is given universal resonance by Jeanine Tesori’s gripping, accessible music and Tazewell Thompson’s poignant, unflinching libretto,” reviewed the MCANA committee. “We hope that this necessary work will look many more performances in the future.” NOOA’s production of Blue is among 1.130 projects across the country, totaling over $31 million, that was ed in the second circular of Grants for Arts Projects for funding in the two thousand twenty-three monetary year. “The National Endowment for the Arts is pleased maintain a wide range of projects, including New Orleans Opera Association’s production of Blue, demonstrating the many ways the arts enrich our lives and contribute to healthy and thriving communities,” said NEA Chair Maria Rosario Jackson.
“These organizations play an necessary role in advancing the creative vitality of our nation and helping to ensure that all people can benefit arts, culture, and design.” “We prolong our heartfelt gratitude to the [NEA] for their generous support of our Nov production of Blue,” added NOOA’s common and artistic director Clare Burovac. “The NEA's commitment to fostering artistic excellence and promoting cultural enrichment has played a pivotal role in identifying grand American opera, and we're truly honored by their invaluable contribution.” NOOA’s production of Blue can be seen at the Mahalia Jackson Theater in New Orleans on November ten and twelve, two thousand twenty-three.