I wrote a piece for Atlanta magazine a few years ago called, “The Context” and within it I discussed the national standing of The Atlanta Opera. At that time AO had just become a resident company at the sparkling Cobb Energy Performing Arts Centre and had increased its annual budget to $6 million. During my research I discussed the topic with Marc Scorca, the president of Opera America. Scorca told me that an opera company reaches national stature when it has achieved success locally, after aligning itself with its home community.
In many ways, I think that news of this AO commission is a step in the right direction and will resonate with Atlanta school children; Harris’ Br’er Rabbit tales are a distinctive part of Atlanta’s cultural history.