The Redemption Center – Sometimes you get more than 5 cents

One of the greatest joys of teaching at Paul Smith’s College over the last few years has been to learn my way through the emerging field of Environmental Humanities. Many of you know how much authors like Dante, Chaucer, Galileo, Shelly, Dario, and more have molded and shaped my musical life. The increasing urgency of climate change has given birth to a new field of Humanities that focuses upon our relationship to the natural world. While looking at these older texts through a new environmental lens, we add more contemporary thinkers like Rachel Carson, Aldo Leopold, Robin Wall Kimmerer and even our current Pope Francis as voices that are helping explore new ways to share, preserve, and be inspired by the wilderness.

The Redemption Center is deeply immersed in these ideas. This jazz/gospel chamber opera confronts the paralysis that emerges from the relentless flood of bad news on climate change. What happens if we can receive more than 5 cents when we bring our returnable cans back? What might an ecological redemption look like? 

This piece is shaping up to be a high energy romp through the biggest global questions we face. Look for updates as the show takes form for a performance late in 2024.
The Redemption Center is made possible by the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of the Office of the Governor and the New York State Legislature.

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