Earlier this month, the opera company Rhymes with Opera had the finale of their 2020 cyberseason with a virtual online event entitled “One Minute Operas.”  I was asked to compose a piece for this performance, and it resulted in a collaboration between me and my wife Jamia Wilson, who wrote the libretto.  Here’s a video that includes Jamia and I introducing the piece,  entitled “Say Her Name,” along with the performance of the work.

This piece is dedicated to Breonna Taylor.

Below is a statement posted yesterday on the blacklivesmatter.com, and I can’t think of a better explanation for the motivation to compose “Say Her Name.”

Statement by Black Lives Matter Global Network Foundation in Response to Grand Jury Verdict in the Breonna Taylor Case
September 23, 2020
“We are completely disgusted and outraged by the indescribable decision that has been rendered in the murder of our beloved, Breonna Taylor. Here we are, yet again, a Black life that has been dehumanized at the hands of the police in cold-blooded murder; has no value in a criminal legal system that is supposed to protect it.”

Photo of Breonna Taylor