Program

Racial Justice Opera Network

OPERA America’s Racial Justice Opera Network is an action group of opera professionals from all sectors of the field who are committed to enriching our art form and industry by seeking racial equity.

The Racial Justice Opera Network is a coalition of BIPOC and white antiracist members working to dismantle racism in opera by actively changing policies and practices that perpetuate the oppression of Black people, Indigenous people, and other people of color.

It aims to:

  • Encourage collaboration, resource-sharing, and opportunities to support a more racially equitable field.
  • Affirm the voices of those who identify as Black, Indigenous, Latinx/Hispanic, Asian, Pacific Islander, South Asian, Arab, Middle Eastern, North African, and/or people of color in the opera field through networking and relationship-building.
  • Create spaces for dialogue, learning, collective action, and support for people of color.

The Racial Justice Opera Network was formerly known as the ALAANA Opera Network.

Get Involved

Participation in the Racial Justice Opera Network is open to anyone affiliated with the opera industry and supportive of the Network’s goals. You can get involved by requesting to join the Facebook group.

Join Facebook Group 

For additional information, contact us at Membership@operaamerica.org or 646.699.5248.

Upcoming Events

The Racial Justice Opera Network convenes at the annual Opera Conference and promotes discourse throughout the year through conference calls and an active private Facebook group.

Racial Justice Opera Forum

Online | March 7–9, 2023

OPERA America’s second-annual Racial Justice Opera Forum welcomes anyone who is committed to moving racial justice forward in the opera field to three days of intentional learning, engagement, and practical application for enacting racial justice. 

The forum will take place virtually from March 7 to 9 and is free for all OPERA America members. Non-members can participate by joining as $75 Individual Members.

Register Now

Click below to register online. For questions or assistance, please contact Quodesia D. Johnson, interim social justice advisor, at QJohnson@operaamerica.org.

SCHEDULE

All sessions will be conducted live on Zoom. Select sessions (as noted with an asterisk below) will be recorded and available for viewing in the access hub following the forum. Additional speakers and details will be added in the coming weeks.

Please note that all times are in Eastern Time.

Tuesday, March 7, 2023
Truth, Correcting the Narrative, and Centering Humanity

1:00 p.m. – 1:10 p.m. • Welcome and Introduction to OPERA America’s Racial Justice Opera Forum
1:10 p.m. – 2:10 p.m. • Reclaiming and Correcting the Narrative*
2:10 p.m. ‒ 2:20 p.m. • Bio/Active Break
2:20 p.m. – 3:20 p.m. • Dismantling Racism Part I: Practice and Approach
3:20 p.m. ‒ 4:00 p.m. • Lunch/Work Break
4:00 p.m. – 4:40 p.m. • Racial Justice in Action Workshop: Organizational Practices*
4:40 p.m. – 5:00 p.m. • Group Discussion and Debrief

Wednesday, March 8, 2023
Day of Research, Connection, and Healing

1:00 p.m. – 1:10 p.m. • Welcome, Group Agreements, Land and People Acknowledgment, and Recap
1:10 p.m. – 2:00 p.m. • Informed Action Network Discussion
2:00 p.m. – 3:00 p.m. • Racial Healing in Opera
3:00 p.m. ‒ 3:30 p.m. • Lunch/Work Break
3:30 p.m. – 5:00 p.m. • Community Spaces in Opera

Thursday, March 9, 2022
Transformation, Collective Tools, and Reimagining Opera

1:00 p.m. – 1:10 p.m. • Welcome, Group Agreements, Land and People Acknowledgment, and Recap
1:10 p.m. – 2:10 p.m. • Celebration and Liberation*
2:10 p.m. ‒ 2:20 p.m. • Active Break
2:20 p.m. – 3:20 p.m. • Dismantling Racism Part II: Policy and Accountability*
3:20 p.m. ‒ 4:00 p.m. • Lunch/Working Break
4:00 p.m. – 4:40 p.m. • Racial Justice in Action Workshop: Field-Wide Racial Justice Standards*
4:40 p.m. – 5:00 p.m. • Group Discussion and Debrief

*Indicates that this session will be recorded and made available to registrants after the forum.

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Racial Justice Opera Network Steering Committee

Quodesia Johnson
Interim Social Justice Advisor, OPERA America; Education & Company Culture Manager, The Dallas Opera

Alejandra Valarino Boyer
Director of Programs and Partnerships, Seattle Opera

Randall Eng
Composer, NYU Faculty

Theresa Ruth Howard
Artist, Writer, and Consultant

Briana Elyse Hunter
Mezzo-Soprano

Jessica Jahn
Costumer Designer

Anh Le
Director of Marketing and Communications, Opera Theatre of Saint Louis

David Lomelí
Chief Artistic Officer, Santa Fe Opera

Chevalier Lovett
Senior Vice President and Managing Director, Organize Florida
Board Member, Opera Orlando

Brandon Neal
Associate Producer, Office of the President, The Juilliard School

Kristian Roberts
Director of Education, The Dallas Opera

Kamala Sankaram
Composer

Tracy L. Wilson
Director of Community Relations, Cincinnati Opera

Parisa Zaeri
Conductor, Coach, and Collaborative Pianist