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Upcoming Events

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“Awash with Color:…

May 4 - 21, 2016
Join us at the Historic New Orleans Collection for the new exhibition… more

BB King's Blues Club…

May 4 - 4, 2016
Join us at the BB King's Blues Club New Orleans for BB King Allstar Band ft.… more

BB King's Blues Club…

May 4 - 4, 2016
Join us at the BB King's Blues Club New Orleans for BB King Allstars Band ft.… more

Comedy Gold hosted by…

May 04, 2016 - Jan 07, 2026
In The Voodoo Garden, All Ages (content may not be appropriate for all ages).… more

David Hansen's Garden…

May 04, 2016
Since 2006, Hansen's Garden District Jazz Trio has performed every night at… more

New Orleans Photo…

May 4 - 29, 2016
The New Orleans Photo Alliance (NOPA), is proud to be the first venue to … more

Siberian Invasion!…

May 4 - 4, 2016
Four funky acts descend upon Siberia for a night of groove and revelry:… more

Soiree d'Or, a…

May 4 - 4, 2016
800x600 800x600 Normal 0 false false false EN-US X-NONE… more

The Historic New…

May 4 - 7, 2016
In commemoration of the 100th anniversary of World War I, The Historic New… more

The Maison Presents -…

May 04, 2016 - Jul 26, 2017
The New Orleans Jazz Vipers play a free dinner show at The Maison every… more

YLC Wednesday at the…

May 4 - 4, 2016
Join us for Wednesday at the Square. The 12-week concert series takes place in… more

BB King's Blues Club…

May 5 - 5, 2016
Join us at the BB King's Blues Club New Orleans for BB King Allstars Band ft.… more

BB King's Blues Club…

May 5 - 5, 2016
Join us at the BB King's Blues Club New Orleans for BB King Allstars Band ft.… more

Heart of the House

May 05, 2016 - Jan 08, 2026
In The Voodoo Garden, All Ages. Heart of the House puts the spotlight on House… more

Jazz in the Park

May 5 - Jun 9, 2016
Jazz in the Park returns this spring running from April 14th to June 9th, with… more

Novice Italian…

May 5 - 19, 2016
Students will develop basic language skills and a general understanding of… more

Novice Italian…

May 5 - 19, 2016
Students will develop basic language skills and a general understanding of… more

Shatner's World We…

May 5 - 5, 2016
Join William Shatner at the Orpheum Theater for his stand up comedy tour… more

BB King's Blues Club…

May 6 - 6, 2016
Join us at the BB King's Blues Club New Orleans for BB King Allstar Band ft.… more

BB King's Blues Club…

May 6 - 6, 2016
Join us at the BB King's Blues Club New Orleans for BB King Allstars Band ft.… more

“Awash with Color:…

May 4 - 21, 2016
Join us at the Historic New Orleans Collection for the new exhibition… more

Longue Vue Premieres Scenes from Freedom Ride

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Media Contacts:
Charlotte LeCorgne ? 504.293.4720 ? clecorgne@longuevue.com
Shira Pinsker ? 504.300.9228 ? righttoshira@gmail.com

                 Longue Vue Premieres Scenes from Freedom Ride,
              An Opera to Commemorate Civil Rights Freedom Riders
                    Opera staged for two public performances only, Oct. 20 & 22

NEW ORLEANS, LA-In celebration of the 50th anniversary of the historic Civil Rights Freedom Rides, Longue Vue House and Gardens premieres three vignettes from Freedom Ride, a newly commissioned concert opera by composer and Xavier University professor Dan Shore. Tickets are $500 for the Oct. 20 premiere performance and include admission to Longue Vue's annual gala fundraiser. Tickets for the Oct. 22 performance are $75.

"Longue Vue founders Edith and Edgar Stern commissioned new works, supported emerging artists and engaged the community in social justice discourse," said Executive Director Joe Baker. "Freedom Ride continues the Sterns' legacy and reinvigorates the museum's commitment to offering lively, contemporary programs that are significant to the New Orleans community."

Freedom Ride is set in 1961, as activists who became known as Freedom Riders began traveling on interstate buses into the American South to draw attention to civil rights injustices and challenge the segregated public transportation system. The opera tells the story of Sylvie Davenport, a fictional African American resident of Pontchartrain Park who is preparing to attend college on scholarship. The Freedom Riders have just arrived in New Orleans and are seeking activists to travel to Jackson, Mississippi, where they most likely will be jailed by local police. Although initially wary of joining the movement, Sylvie is drawn in by Clayton Thomas, an old acquaintance who has become a Freedom Rider. As reports of beatings and mob violence in Mississippi reach New Orleans, Sylvie's mother forbids her from riding the buses, fearing for her safety and warning her that she stands to forfeit her scholarship if she is arrested. Torn between pursuing her academic career and joining the civil rights movement, Sylvie's story of self-realization and love highlights the courage and sacrifice of those who pursue social justice.

Staging and Performers
Edith and Edgar Stern used their home as a hub for political activity, organizing debates and discussions about philanthropy, community and civic action. Accordingly, the three scenes from Freedom Ride will be staged on the grounds at Longue Vue, in the museum's impressive Spanish Court. This site-specific work will feature internationally acclaimed soloists: Dara Rahming (soprano), Valerie Jones Francis (soprano), Chauncey Packer (tenor) and Anthony Zoeller (baritone). The soloists will be accompanied by celebrated pianist Wilfred Delphin and the Xavier University of Louisiana Concert Choir, directed by John Ware.

A Legacy of Artistic Support
The Sterns passionately supported emerging artists, including internationally renowned soprano and native New Orleanian Annabelle Bernard (1940-2005). In keeping with the Sterns' legacy, composer Dan Shore was commissioned to create an opera for Longue Vue. Baker wanted to create a socially significant work with a local connection and Shore began researching the Freedom Riders. As he crafted the story for the opera, Shore thought about the circumstances of an individual who would defy convention and join the Civil Rights Movement, despite knowing the risks involved.

"Who was the person who had the guts to do this? What is that process? When I thought about that I realized I had my opera," Shore said.

The 2011 recipient of the Gambit's Big Easy Entertainment Award for Creative Achievement in Opera, Shore's other operas and plays include An Embarrassing Position, Travel, and The Beautiful Bridegroom, which was awarded first prize in the National Opera Association's Chamber Opera Composition Competition and has been produced over a dozen times across the country. He is an alumnus of the BMI-Lehman Engel Musical Theatre Workshop and a Fulbright scholar; he holds a B.M. and M.M. from the New England Conservatory and a Ph.D. from the City University of New York.

Freedom Ride is part of an ongoing effort by Baker to reconnect with Longue Vue's mission of supporting civic engagement, environmental stewardship and artistic practice. In addition to Freedom Ride, Longue Vue has embarked on an ambitious agenda that stresses the museum's role as a resource for adult and youth education and a catalyst for social change.

About Longue Vue
Longue Vue House and Gardens is an eight-acre Country Place Era estate comprised of a Classical Revival-style mansion surrounded by 11 different gardens, including an interactive children's garden. The former home of philanthropists Edith and Edgar Stern, Longue Vue now serves as an educational and cultural resource. Longue Vue offers tours daily and holds events and exhibits that fulfill its mission "to preserve and use the historical and artistic legacy of Longue Vue and its creators to educate and inspire people to pursue beauty and civic responsibility in their lives." Longue Vue, a designated National Historic Landmark, is accredited by the American Association of Museums and included on the National Register of Historic Places. For more information, visit http://www.longuevue.com/.FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE