This Little Light of Mine, a one-act opera, dramatizes the story of Fannie Lou Hamer, a former sharecropper who rose to national prominence at the 1964 Democratic National Convention. In the opera, adopted daughter Dorothy Jean Hamer tells how Fannie Lou and her husband ‘Pap’ took in foster children as their own; how the injustices of the Jim Crow laws emboldened her to demand the right to vote for African-Americans; and how she shook the political world during “Freedom Summer” by helping to found the Mississippi Freedom Democratic Party. Describing to the Convention Credentials Committee her harrowing story of harassment, arrest and beating by the police, Fannie Lou Hamer pointedly asked: “Is this America?” This Little Light of Mine is in development as part of the Opera for All Voices program, fostered by the Santa Fe Opera and its consortium partners. The commission and production of This Little Light of Mine is made possible by a deeply appreciated grant from Principal Community Engagement sponsor the Melville Hankins Family Foundation.
Diana Solomon-Glover, Librettist; Chandler Carter, composer; Beth Greenberg, director; Andrea Fineberg, Dir. of Community Engagement, Santa Fe Opera; Jeri Johnson, conductor
Friday Webinars at Wharton Arts is a series dedicated to making authentic connections between art and life through the sharing of stories, expertise, and creations by guest artists of varied disciplines. The series is curated and hosted by Artistic Director and Principal Conductor Helen H. Cha-Pyo.