“I can’t breathe”…
Breath is life; breath powers the voice; the voice powers our art form; our art form gives power to the stories that unite and lift us in our common humanity. George Floyd’s breath, his voice, his story, his life was extinguished before the nation’s eyes as we all watched in horror. Our Anchorage Opera family shares the anger and sorrow of our nation, and of the world, as we continue to experience further acts of inhumanity and we embrace our role as a voice for enlightenment, empathy and understanding. We’ve witnessed the power of opera to breathe change into our own community and we commit to continuing the work of powerful listening to ensure that the voices of all the named and unnamed victims of systemic racism and violence, aren’t silenced. We stand in solidarity with our community and commit to listening to ALL its voices; to use opera to breathe life into new stories that need to be told.
Now more than ever, we renew our commitment to embrace diversity and tell stories that express ALL of humanity’s deepest emotions and loftiest dreams; to create a safe space where Black, Alaska Native and other Indigenous People, Asian American, Pacific Islander, Latino, and all People of Color are an integral part of the creation of opera on and off our stage. A space where we can all lift our voices as one; where we can all breathe with one voice.
Reed Smith, General Director
Anchorage Opera Board of Trustees
Anchorage Opera Staff