Stinney: An American Execution

Opera Work-in-Progress

Saturday, January 12, 2019 at 5pm
Sunday, January 13, 2019 at 3pm
Post-Show Talk on Saturday, January 12
FIAF Florence Gould Hall

Based on a true story, Stinney: An American Execution, a bold new opera by Frances Pollock, examines racial and social divides in a small town in South Carolina and the terrifying consequences it had on a fourteen year old black boy.

An involuntary symbol of sickening injustice, George Junius Stinney Jr. was executed at the age of 14. Having been wrongly accused and convicted of the rape and murder of two white girls in Alcolu, SC, in 1944, George became the youngest person legally executed in 20th century America. Stinney tells the story of George, his family, his community, and the jury of ten white men that sent an innocent black boy to the electric chair.

With roots in both gospel and electronic techniques, Stinney spotlights the anger and agony of the entire populous of Alcolu, connecting the dots to our own socio-political climate in 2019 and the pervasive “fear of the other”.

Composed by Frances Pollock
Libretto by Tia Price & Frances Pollock
Directed by Emma Weinstein & Jeremy O. Harris
Music Directed by Alexander Lloyd Blake

Dramaturgy by Imani Mosley & Jeremy O. Harris
Stinney Family Representative Maria Williams

A bold, bracing opera that pulls no punches and never flinches” — The Baltimore Sun

Two hours with intermission
No late seating

The Saturday, January 12 performance will be followed by a conversation with members of the creative team.

    • Democratic Ideals and Racism:  An Examination of the Cradle to Prison Pipeline
      Thursday, January 10 at Harlem Stage

      Harlem Stage will host a moderated panel discussion around the creative response of artists as they witness, experience and analyze the collective trauma of being Black in America. The discussion will feature members of the creative team of “Stinney: An American Execution.

    • PROTOTYPE – OPERA l THEATRE l NOW is an annual festival of visionary opera-theatre and music-theatre works by pioneering contemporary artists from New York City and around the world. PROTOTYPE is a co-production of Beth Morrison Projects and HERE, two leaders in the creation and presentation of contemporary, multi-disciplinary opera-theatre and music-theatre work. The pioneering festival is the only one of its kind in New York City and is a model now emulated around the country — presenting both complete performances as well as works-in-progress through partnerships with local performing arts venues.

      Now blazing into its sixth season, PROTOTYPE returns January 2019.

      Learn more at