Classical music: The Ear asks again — why hasn’t an opera about Martin Luther King Jr. been written? What classical music should be played to honor him? | January 16, 2017
By Jacob Stockinger
Today is an important and, in some parts of the United States, still controversial holiday: Martin Luther King Jr. Day.
Such an occasion and its artistic celebration assumes even greater importance now that we are on the verge of the Trump Era, which starts this coming Friday with the Inauguration of President-elect Donald J. Trump.
Once again The Ear looked for classical music to mark the occasion and the holiday. But the results he found were limited. Do we really need to hear Samuel Barber’s famous and sadly beautiful but overplayed “Adagio for Strings” again on this day?
So The Ear asks the same question he asked two years ago: Why hasn’t anyone written an opera about the pioneering civil rights activist and Nobel Peace Prize winner Martin Luther King Jr., who was assassinated in 1968 and would today be 88?
Here is a link to that more extended post that asks the same question:
If you know of such an opera, please let The Ear know in the COMMENT section.
Or perhaps a composer could write something about King similar to Aaron Copland‘s popular “A Lincoln Portrait.” King certainly provided lots of eloquent words for a inspiring text or narration.
And if there is classical music that you think is appropriate to mark the occasion, please leave word of it, with a YouTube link if possible.
In the meantime, in the YouTube video below The Ear offers the first movement from the “Afro-American Symphony” by the underperformed black American composer William Grant Still (1874-1954):
Posted in Classical music
, A Lincoln Portrait
, Aaron Copland
, Adagio for Strings
, African Americans
, Civil and political rights
, civil rights
, Donald J. Trump
, Donald Trump
, Jacob Stockinger
, Martin Luther King Jr
, Martin Luther King Jr. Day
, Nobel Peace Prize
, Samuel Barber
, United States
, University of Wisconsin-Madison School of Music
, University of Wisconsin–Madison
, William Grant Still