Santa Fe Opera Set to Premiere Chandler Carter & Diana Solomon-Glover’s ‘This Little Light of Mine’

By David Salazar

Santa Fe Opera is set to present the world premiere of “This Little Light of Mine” on Oct. 28-30, 2022.

The opera was composed by Chandler Carter and librettist Diana Solomon-Glover. The work was developed as part of as part of the company’s Opera for All Voices consortium.

The opera is based on the life of voting rights activist Fannie Lou Hamer. It will be conducted by Jeri Lynne Johnson and directed by Beth Greenberg. It will star Nicole Joy Mitchell, Kearstin Piper Brown, Heather Hill, and Albuquerque’s Gospel Choir Community.

“The music of This Little Light begins and ends with the voice of Fannie Lou herself,” Carter said in an official press statement. “The sound of her singing civil rights anthems – ‘Woke Up This Morning,’ ‘Go Tell it on the Mountain,’ ‘Ain’t Gonna Let Nobody Turn Me ‘Round’ and ‘This Little Light of Mine,’ – anchors all of my vocal writing, especially for chorus. But just as important is the sound of Mrs. Hamer’s powerful speaking voice, excerpts of which I incorporate into the score, telling her harrowing story of humiliation, torture and ultimate triumph.”