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Is This America? A New Opera About Fannie Lou Hamer, Voting Rights Activist

This is a past event.

Saturday, February 27 at 8:00pm

Virtual Event

Is this America?
February 27, 2021 | Free live stream from North Miami Beach Bandshell, 8pm (EST) - RSVP NOW

FIU Opera Theater Production
Scenes from the Opera For All Voices commission, "This Little Light of Mine"
Featuring the FIU Opera Workshop, Symphony Orchestra, and Choirs
In partnership with the Santa Fe Opera
Robert B. Dundas, FIU Opera Theater Director
Javier Jose Mendoza, FIU Symphony Orchestra Conductor

Music by Chandler Carter
Words by Diana Solomon-Glover
Concept and Dramaturgy by Beth Greenberg

Join us virtually for the orchestral world premiere of "Is This America?," selections based on the new, one-act opera "This Little Light of Mine" that portrays key events in the life of civil rights activist Fannie Lou Hamer. A black woman of humble origins, she spoke truth to power and her tireless efforts culminated in the passage of the Voting Rights Act of 1965.

A panel discussion will be made available with librettist Diana Solomon-Glover, dramaturgist Beth Greenberg, composer Chandler Carter, FIU journalism professor and activist Karla Kennedy and moderator Karen S. Fuller Veloz about the opera and the importance of hearing collective voices. The panelists will be joined by special guest and activist LaToya Ratlieff, great-niece of Hamer.

This event is presented as a free live stream. Your RSVP will provide you a reminder with links to view the program and gain access to the panel discussion. 


Thank You to our Sponsors:

The funding for the commission of This Little Light of Mine is provided by • Opera America • Melville Hankins Family Foundation • Andrew W. Mellon Foundation

The development of "Is This America?" was sponsored by Lynn J. Loacker.

We gratefully acknowledge the support of our cultural partner, The Rhythm Foundation, and the many individuals who have made this production possible and who are able to continue supporting artists.


Helps keep these performances accessible to the public. Donate to our student scholarship fund today! 


Student Performance Opportunities Through Giving: This Spring, many of our courses offer students an in-person component, utilizing hybrid models which enable them to continue their education in a meaningful way. Our students depend on scholarships to be able to participate in important performance opportunities that not only support their education goals, but also support our community. Please consider giving in any amount to help make a difference by supporting our scholarship fund by clicking here. Thank you for your generosity in this difficult times.

Music and Diversity: We are also proud to offer course selections that stress diversity within the classroom such as “African-American Music,” “Music of the World,” along with so many others including this collaborative work about Fannie Lou Hamer performed by our students in the opera, orchestral, and production courses. Read more about our statement on Music, Diversity, and Social Justice by visiting

Event Type

Arts & Culture, Music, Performing arts


Students, Faculty & Staff, Alumni, General Public, Prospective Students


opera, music, vocal, CARTA, diversity, America, Black History, voting rights, fannie lou hamer, concer


Free live stream

School of Music


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