Lyric Opera of Chicago Teams With Chicago Urban League For Youth Program

By David Salazar

The Lyric Opera of Chicago is joining forces with the Chicago Urban League for “EmpowerYouth! Igniting Creativity through the Arts.”

The event is a multidisciplinary afterschool program that is aimed at presenting a fully staged, youth-centric opera based on real-life experiences. “EmpowerYouth!” spans two years beginning this fall and will run through the summer of 2019 and will work with approximately 30 high school students from four Chicago communities including Bronzeville, Englewood, West Englewood, and Roseland. Local artists will also participate with the students and the new production will be led by composer Damien Sneed and librettist Patricia Smith.

“What a wonderful opportunity for creative collaboration between our two organizations, all in support of the students it will serve,” said Anthony Freud, the Lyric of Chicago’s general director, president & CEO. “And what exciting opportunities ‘EmpowerYouth!’ will provide for the participating high-school students — through education, exposure, engagement, and experience. We greatly look forward to supporting their journey of discovery — of opera as a revelatory form of expression, and even more important, of themselves as creative individuals and collaborators with unlimited potential.”