Four feted for contributions to U.S. opera

Arroyo, Glass draw NEA Opera Honors

Martina Arroyo, David Di-Chiera, Philip Glass and Eve Queler are the recipients of the third annual NEA Opera Honors, National Endowment of the Arts chair Rocco Landesman announced on Thursday.

The awards will be presented at a concert and ceremony produced by the Washington National Opera on Oct. 22 at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington, DC.

“This class of NEA Opera Honorees is four outstanding individuals who together represent the finest traditions of opera,” said Landesman in a statement. “Without their artistic accomplishments, the world of American opera would be far less extraordinary.”The four honorees will each receive $25,000 in recognition of their contributions to American opera.

Arroyo, a soprano, is considered among the first generation of black opera singers to achieve world renown and is known for her commitment to young artist development through the Martina Arroyo Foundation.

Known as a pioneer of the minimalist movement, Glass has composed several operas and symphonies. (He has also scored films including “Koyaanisqatsi,” “The Hours” and “Kundun.”)

DiChiera’s career includes general director posts in Ohio and California, as well as at the Michigan Opera Theater.

And Queler is being recognized for her focus on rarely performed operas and her dedication to emerging singers as music director of the Opera Orchestra of New York.

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