FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Longue Vue House and Gardens receives Big Easy Award nomination
for "Best Student or Community Opera"
In 1961, after the two original buses of Freedom Riders traveling from Washington DC to New Orleans were bombed and attacked, and a large number of student activists were imprisoned in the infamous Mississippi State Penitentiary in Parchman, hundreds of volunteers from all over the United States traveled to the South to keep the Civil Rights Movement alive. Freedom Ride, an opera commissioned by Longue Vue House and Gardens and composed by Dan Shore, has been nominated by the Big Easy Foundation for "Best Student or Community Opera". Winners will be announced at the 18th annual Tribute to the Classical Arts luncheon Thursday, February 9, 2012, at the Hotel Monteleone. The Tribute to the Classical Arts recognizes outstanding performances of classical music, opera, ballet, and ethnic and contemporary dance.
Freedom Ride came about as a result of a meeting between Dan Shore, a composer and librettist who is also on the faculty at Xavier University of Louisiana, and Joe Baker, the Executive Director of Longue Vue, who envisioned a musical work that would celebrate both New Orleans and the Civil Rights Movement.
The opera is part of a committed effort by Baker to stimulate Longue Vue's civic engagement, environmental stewardship and artistic practice: "Longue Vue is thrilled to be a center for commissioning new works and enlivening civil discourse in New Orleans, in the tradition of Edith and Edgar Stern." 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.
Shore is the 2011 recipient of the Gambit's Big Easy Entertainment Award for Creative Achievement in Opera. His other operas and plays include An Embarrassing Position, Travel, and The Beautiful Bridegroom, which received first prize in the National Opera Association's Chamber Opera Composition Competition. 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.
About Longue Vue House and Gardens
Longue Vue House and Gardens, located in New Orleans at 7 Bamboo Road, is an eight-acre Country Place Era estate comprised of a Classical Revival-style house museum surrounded by 14 different gardens, including an interactive children's garden. It is the former home of philanthropists Edith and Edgar Stern, who were known nationally for their innovative approach to leadership in cultural preservation, social justice, education, the arts, and government. Longue Vue now serves as an educational and cultural resource for the public, offering daily tours and hosting numerous events centered around design, preservation, gardening, architecture, and engagement that sustain 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 is included on the National Register of Historic Places. Longue Vue is open from 10:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday and 1:00 pm to 5:00 p.m. on Sunday. For more information, call 504.488.5488 or visit us at www.longuevue.com.