Cincinnati Opera Announces Discussion and Preview Concert of Tracy K. Smith and Gregory Spears’ ‘Castor and Patience’

By Chris Ruel

Former U.S. Poet Laureate Tracy K. Smith and composer Gregory Spears will hold a discussion and present a preview concert featuring excerpts from their new opera, “Castor and Patience,” at Library of Congress’s Coolidge Auditorium on May 12, 2022. The work is set to have its world premiere at Cincinnati Opera beginning on July 21, 2022, and running through July 30.

Smith and Spears will be joined by conductor Kazem Abdullah; soprano Amber Monroe, baritone Reginald Smith Jr., mezzo-soprano Jennifer Johnson Cano, baritone Benjamin Taylor; and pianist Michael Lewis.

Smith and Spears’ opera centers on two cousins from an African American family who find themselves at odds over the fate of a historic parcel of land they have inherited in the American South and explores historical and continuing obstacles to Black land ownership in the United States.