Soprano Raises Awareness Through Song

by Alison Young, Minnesota Public Radio
April 22, 2013

ST. PAUL, Minn. — Coloratura soprano Laura Hynes was asked a few years ago to consider offering a musical performance to raise awareness about violence against women.

As a doctoral candidate at the University of Minnesota, it was the sort of project a student could get lost in. Reading through piles of music, thinking of what themes to explore, and maybe even making the entire event multi-media and ask friends to bring their talents to the case.

But for Laura - who spent several years performing in Europe where she says the connection of classical music and the rest of life is more natural - this project helped her rethink her role as an opera diva and the whole point of making music in the first place.

This Wednesday, Laura will be joined by four University of Minnesota School of Music singers, guitarist Maja Radovanlija, and pianist Mijin Choi plus dancer Samantha Phillippi - the currently reigning Miss Minneapolis.

Minnesota composers Libby Larson and David Evan Thomas are represented along with Bernstein, Kurt Weill and many others.

The words, music and performance are intended to explore the issues of violence against women through the ages as well as open up dialogue to make any form of violence unacceptable in our society.

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