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Video Published: 27 May 2020

Creating Real Belonging: Panel Discussion

Color-blind casting has defined the field’s commitment to diversity for decades, but it is an insufficient standard by which to include people of color in opera. Opera lags behind other art forms and industries in reflecting the world around us — onstage, backstage, in administrative offices and around the board table — reinforcing negative stereotypes that keep people away from the opera house. Transforming opera’s culture requires change in the attitudes and practices that have defined the field for generations. Panelists will suggest ways to create a space that embraces audiences, staff and artists of color, and invites them to engage fully in the creation, production and enjoyment of an art form that will be enriched and expanded through their participation.

Creating Real Belonging is sponsored by Fisher Dachs Associates.


Alejandra Boyer, Director of Programs and Partnerships, Seattle Opera
Quo Johnson, Education and Company Culture Manager at The Dallas Opera
Huang Ruo, Composer and Conductor
Nina Simon, Spacemaker and CEO, OF/BY/FOR ALL
Ryan Taylor, President and General Director, Minnesota Opera
Theresa Ruth Howard, dancer, teacher, writer, blogger
Mark Valdez, Director, Writer, and Producer


Conference Sponsors and Institutional Funders:

National Endowment for the Arts
Bank of America
Wallace Foundation
Fisher Dachs Associates
Music Publishers Association
Threshold Acoustics Act 1 Tours
Arts Consulting Group
Genovese Vanderhoof & Associates