Brandie Sutton, Damien Sneed, Justin Austin, Deborah Nansteel Headline Opera Saratoga’s ‘America Sings’ Online Series

By David Salazar

Opera Saratoga has announced a brand new partnership with Caffè Lena to produce “America Sings,” a new online series that feature BIPOC artists.

The series will launch on Nov. 19 with a concert performance featuring mezzo-soprano Deborah Nansteel alongside pianist Giovanni Reggioli as they take on music by George Gershwin, Billy Strayhorn, Richard Rogers, Erroll Garner, Richard Wagner, and William Bolcom, along with a selection of traditional spirituals.  

Streaming Date: Nov. 19, 2020

A month later, soprano Brandie Sutton and composer Damien Sneed join forces for another unique recital experience.

Streaming Date: Dec. 30, 2020

Sneed returns a month later to perform alongside baritone Justin Austin.

Streaming Date: Jan. 24, 2021

“Our focus on BIPOC artists in this series is one of our first steps in a multi-pronged plan to address diversity and equity not only in our programming at Opera Saratoga, but in the organization as a whole,” Opera Saratoga’s Artistic Director Lawrence Edelson stated in a press release. “The onset of the coronavirus pandemic, the racial awakening that has been taking place across the country, and the polarizing political climate leading up to the election has energized artists. While many singers have not been able to perform for live audiences due to the pandemic, they are engaged and craving the opportunity to share the transformative power of song and the intersection between music and what is happening in our country with audiences. I have not programmed this series, other than to invite an incredible group of artists to join us in Saratoga Springs. Rather, I have asked each artist to curate their own concert – to share music with us that speaks to how they are feeling about America today. I cannot wait to hear what each artist brings to us as they share their personal experience and perspective through the power of their incredible voices.”