|When:||Wednesday 26 February 2020
Lensic Performing Arts Center
|What:||Readings & Conversations event|
About this Event
Millie and Christine McKoy Sisters' Syncopated Sonnets in Song is a collaboration by poet Tyehimba Jess and composer Janice A. Lowe. This song cycle of duets is a musical setting of the contrapuntal, interstitial text of the Millie-Christine poems in Jess’s Pulitzer Prize–winning Olio.
Millie and Christine McKoy were conjoined African American twins who were born into slavery in North Carolina in 1818. Trained as children to sing, dance, play string instruments, and speak multiple languages, the sisters, billed as “the two-headed nightingale” and “the eighth wonder of the world,” were presented as a traveling curio and performance act. After emancipation, the sisters continued to perform and eventually became successful enough to purchase the plantation on which they had been enslaved.
Composed and conducted by Janice A. Lowe, with text by Tyehimba Jess and music by Janice A. Lowe, the chamber song cycle is performed by Meredith Wright, soprano; Olithea Anglin, mezzo-soprano; Janice A. Lowe, piano; Melanie Dyer, viola; Yohann Potico, bass guitar; and Tyehimba Jess, poet.