Washington National Opera Presents “Songs for the Unsung,” a Free Performance December 9 at the Armed Forces Retirement Home

Washington National Opera via DC City Blog) – Washington National Opera (WNO) will present Songs for the Unsung, a free public concert, on Thursday, December 9, 2:00 p.m. at the historic Armed Forces Retirement Home. Songs for the Unsung will feature original musical works inspired by the personal memories of American war veterans. The concert is presented in collaboration with Double Nickels Theatre Company and the Armed Forces Retirement Home. Event details are below.

Through live music and performance, “Songs for the Unsung” preserves the memories of those who served in the military from World War II to the Vietnam Conflict. Over the course of several months, retired military veterans at the Armed Forces Retirement Home shared their stories with the Double Nickels Theatre Company, a company that specializes in “reminiscence theatre.” The Double Nickels team turned to the artists at Washington National Opera to turn the stories into an operatic concert, garnering the power of music and the human voice to tell these Veterans’ moving, personal stories.  Songs for the Unsung breathes new life into seminal American experiences spanning more than 90 years and uses the performing arts to reinvigorate communication across generations and cultures.

Songs for the Unsung continues WNO’s commitment to serving diverse communities throughout the region, using the art of opera to inspire, entertain and educate both on and off the stage. Similarly, Double Nickels Theatre Company harnesses the rich stories of senior citizens’ well-lived lives and turns them into art. Recognizing the military’s integral role in the broader Washington, D.C. community, WNO and Double Nickels Theatre Company partner for the first time with Songs for the Unsung, amplifying both organizations’ community outreach initiatives.

Performers include tenor Jesús Hernandez, a Domingo-Cafritz Young Artist as well as an Iraq War veteran. Joining him onstage are sopranos Jennifer Waters, Joyce Lundy and Alia Waheed. Songs and lyrics are written by WNO artist Tom Minter.

WHAT: Songs for the Unsung
A free concert performance celebrating the legacy of military veterans

WHEN: Thursday, December 9, 2010, 2:00 to 3:30 p.m.

WHERE: Armed Forces Retirement Home
3700 North Capitol Retirement Home
Washington, DC 20011-8400
(Entrance: Upshur Street and Rock Creek Church Road, NW)

WHO: Residents of Armed Forces Retirement Home, Washington National Opera, Double
Nickels Theatre Company

ADMISSION: Free and open to the public.

Double Nickels, Inc. is a 501(c)(3) reminiscence theater company with a vision towards connecting members of the senior population to the larger community through the power of theater, while harnessing the rich stories of their well-lived lives. The Double Nickels Theatre Company was founded in 2006 by Antoinette Ford as a way of encouraging seniors to stay actively involved with their communities, youth and people of differing cultures and backgrounds.

Founded in 1956, Washington National Opera is recognized as one of America’s leading opera companies. Under the leadership of Plácido Domingo since 1996, WNO continues to build on its rich history by offering operas of the highest artistic quality, balancing popular grand opera with new and infrequently performed works. In addition, WNO fulfills its mission by serving as a vital resource throughout the DC metro area, bringing opera to a broad and diverse public through its award-winning education and community programs.


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