Courtney Bryan Named Composer In Residence At Opera Philadelphia

PHILADELPHIA -For more than a decade, Opera Philadelphia’s Composer in Residence program has provided composers with opportunities for exploration and creative development in opera. The first comprehensive operatic program of its kind in the country, it provides composers with highly individualized creative development such as connecting with experts, detailed work with singers and working with the company to further their study of creation and exploration in opera.

Past Composers in Residence have included Missy Mazzoli and Tyshawn Sorey, and many have debuted song cycles, digital shorts, and full operas with the company. The Composer in Residence program is made possible by the Mellon Foundation.
Courtney Bryan, who begins as Opera Philadelphia’s next Composer in Residence in the fall of 2022, is “a pianist and composer of panoramic interests” (New York Times). Her music is in conversation with musical genres from jazz and experimental music to gospel, spirituals, and hymns. Bryan is the Albert and Linda Mintz Professor of Music at Newcomb College in the School of Liberal Arts at Tulane University and a Creative Partner with the Louisiana Philharmonic Orchestra. Bryan has a Bachelor of Music from Oberlin Conservatory, a Master of Music from Rutgers University, a Doctoral of Musical Arts from Columbia University, and completed postdoctoral studies in the Department of African American Studies at Princeton University. She was the 2018 music recipient of the Herb Alpert Award in the Arts, a 2018 Hermitage Fellow, a 2019-20 recipient of the Samuel Barber Rome Prize in Music Composition, and a 2020 United States Artists Fellow.
“Courtney is a multidimensional force with inspirational depth, spirituality, and individuality,” said Sarah Williams, Opera Philadelphia’s Director of New Works and Creative Producer. “She extends a bold and conscious artistic expression, carving out distinct and touching creativity that desperately needs. I’m looking forward to digging in with Courtney and supporting her journey in opera. Our industry will be all the better for her exploration and voice in opera.”

Bryan’s first work with Opera Philadelphia was Blessed, one of the original four digital commissions produced for the Opera Philadelphia Channel in early 2021. With a film by Tiona Nekkia McClodden featuring Janinah Burnett and Damian Norfleet, Blessed was a revelation in how opera could be reimagined for the streaming world, as well as a deeply personal piece that featured Bryan’s New Orleans church and footage of her in her hometown.
Bryan may also be familiar to viewers of the free Reflection & Re-Vision series on the Opera Philadelphia Channel, where she participated in a panel discussion on the experiences of women composers in the opera and classical music world.

Family & Kids

 2nd St Festival Northern Liberties

2nd St Festival Northern Liberties

  • Elwin Flatley
  • Sep 16
Candytopia Philadelphia Halloween Sweets and Treats
  • Where Philly Staff
  • Sep 05
Philadelphia Zoo's Friday Nights Dinos and Bites
  • Where Philly Staff
  • May 20
Philadelphia Zoo Big Time Dinosaurs
  • Haylie Carter
  • May 10