Blanchard’s ‘Fire Shut Up in my Bones’

January 8, 2022, 12:00 pm

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Angel Blue as Destiny, Walter Russell III as Char’es-Baby, Latonia Moore as Billie, and Will Liverman as Charles in Terence Blanchard's Fire Shut Up in My Bones (Photo: Ken Howard / Met Opera)

Opening Night of the 2021–22 season was a historic occasion—the Met’s first performance of an opera by a Black composer. Yannick Nézet-Séguin conducts Grammy Award-winning jazz musician and composer Terence Blanchard’s adaptation of Charles M. Blow’s moving memoir, which The New York Times praised after its 2019 world premiere at Opera Theatre of Saint Louis as “bold and affecting” and “subtly powerful.” Featuring a libretto by filmmaker Kasi Lemmons, the opera tells a poignant and profound story about a young man’s journey to overcome a life of trauma and hardship. Fire Shut Up in My Bones is also featured this season at Lyric Opera of Chicago.

Baritone Will Liverman, one of opera’s most exciting young artists (and an alum of the Ryan Opera Center), stars as Charles, alongside soprano Angel Blue as Destiny/Loneliness/Greta, soprano Latonia Moore as Billie, and Walter Russell III as Char’es-Baby.

Description adapted from the Met Opera.