Stunning contemporary music combines with a paean to nonviolent political activism in a new Metropolitan Opera production of Satyagraha, an opera by Philip Glass with a libretto by artist/writer Constance DeJong, Distinguished Lecturer in Hunter’s Department of Art.
The opera will be performed at the Met on April 11, 14, 19, 22, 25, and 28 and May 1.
“Satyagraha,” explains DeJong, “is the name that Gandhi gave to his nonviolent civil disobedience movement. The opera covers the years during which Gandhi and members of the movement practiced Satyagraha in South Africa.” The opera’s text, she continues, reflects “the historical continuity of nonviolence beginning before South Africa, coming to fruition there, reappearing in the American civil rights movement, remaining still as a methodology among present-day political activists ill-disposed to terrorism. In this way the opera suggests the persistence of an idea.”
DeJong, who received her MA from Hunter, has been teaching at the college since 1998.