Fred Owens


Dear Opera in the Rock Patrons, Friends, and Supporters,

I am excited to announce our 2022-2023, honoring the profound presence, culture, and artistic diversity of the Black community.

When considering the first full season since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, three things came to mind: our unwavering commitment to celebrating our communities; honoring those who made Opera in the Rock possible; and embracing the many possibilities ahead of us. As an evolving organization that honors and respects our history, we envision a bold, abundant, and progressive future for the organization and the state of Arkansas. Celebrating the Black community, which has always been an undeniable factor in the art and culture of our nation, is a way to do exactly that. I am thrilled to share in the rich cultural experiences Arkansas has to offer as we connect the stories of our communities and introduce new audiences to this magnificent art form.

The 2022-2023 season kicks-off with a masked gala event featuring world-renowned mezzo-soprano, Denyce Graves (September 9, 2022). The season continues with world-class performances of Porgy and Bess (November 19-20, 2022), Diva’s in the Rock: A Whitney Houston Tribute (February 11-12, 2023), and Phenomenal Woman (March 4, 2023) before ending with highly anticipated performances of William Grant Still’s Highway One (June 3-4), 2022. This season also presents “Let’s Talk Opera”, a series of dynamic, monthly conversations about the connections to art, culture, and performance with local and national guests, contributing to Arkansas’s role as a cultural force of the South. It is an honor to present such amazing artists and beloved works as we come together in celebration of Black artistry in the first of several seasons celebrating the rich cultural histories and profound impact of African American, Asian, and Latin communities.

The COVID-19 pandemic continues to teach us to embrace our creativity and foster deeper connections with one another. What can we do if we work together? What awaits all of us in this space of celebration, connection, and opportunity? As a change agent, Opera in the Rock is committed to finding the answer to these question with each of you.

It is my hope that the moments we create together are just as meaningful and inviting as I know Arkansas can be. Our doors are open to togetherness and celebration, and I cannot wait to welcome you back, or for the first time, to Opera in the Rock.