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Jasmine Arielle Barnes is a promising young composer and vocalist whose work has been performed world-wide. She is a multifaceted composer who embraces a variety of genres, formats, and instrumentations with a specialty of writing for the voice. She recently won a Capital Emmy for Diversity/Equity/Inclusion - Long Form Content for the Maryland Public Television documentary, film Artworks: Dreamerwhich featured her piece, Portraits: Douglass & Tubman.

Barnes is currently a composer-in-residence for American Lyric Theater and previously held residencies as a composer fellow at Chautauqua Opera, and composer-in-residence with All Classical Portland. Her work is in high demand, with recent commissions from respected institutions throughout the country including Washington National Opera (in celebration of the Kennedy Center's 50th year anniversary), Bare Opera, Resonance Ensemble, Tapestry Choir, City Works Cleveland, LyricFest Philadelphia, Baltimore Choral Arts, Burleigh Music Festival, Symphony Number One, Baltimore Musicales, and The Voic(ed) Project, amongst others. [read more...]


"... It was refreshing. It was engaging. It was exciting…” – San Francisco Classical Voice

Love and Light – “The more melodically and emotionally complex half featured a trio of world premiere works commissioned by Thomas… and Love and Light by Jasmine Barnes… Barnes’s Love and Light, which concluded the recital, further explored the freedom of coming out to face one’s true self. “A shadow of fear, not allowed to shine. I’ve mastered threat in silhouette” — a sentiment reminiscent of Ralph Ellison’s Invisible Manand the smoldering spirit in the pages of James Baldwin — gay, Black, and proud. It was refreshing. It was engaging. It was exciting."


"...comfortably tonal..." – By Tim Smith

Portraits: Douglass & Tubman – "The composer writes in a very direct, comfortably tonal manner that serves the texts well."


"... precisely imagined antiquity..." – The Washington Post

The Burning Bush – "The night closed with “The Burning Bush,” an opera from the Baltimore-based team of composer Jasmine Barnes and Joshua Banbury — and set in a surrealist version of that city’s long-ago vaudeville scene. While pianist Roderick Demmings Jr. stayed onstage to coax out the score’s precisely imagined antiquity, soprano Suzannah Waddington (as an allegorical MC) and baritone Daniel J. Smith (as a vaudevillian “invisible man”) carried the opera’s miniature acts right into the audience. It was a clever way of reflecting the spectacle made of violence against Black people (in this case, Freddie Gray), and inviting revision of the stories (and histories) too often consumed as entertainment."



Aaron Sanko


Shawn Marie Jeffery

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