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Opera for All Voices (OFAV) began as a consortium of North American opera companies committed to co-commissioning and co-producing new operatic works for audiences of all ages that bear the same artistic integrity and depth of storytelling as main stage works. Over several years it has grown in its mission to tell "stories of our time." Follow host Andrea Fellows Fineberg from The Santa Fe Opera and OFAV collaborators and stakeholders as we explore the process, the context, and the story of commissioning and producing new operas in America.

Apr 10, 2019

Andrea Fellows Walters and Brandon Neal are back with Season 2!

Sweet Potato Kicks the Sun, our first commission for Opera for All Voices, gets a closer listen with a live audience.

Hopping back in our OFAV time machine, we travel to September 2018 Chicago. Sweet Potato had a live workshop with invited audience and we had a rare opportunity to find out both what audience members were anticipating before the workshop, and what they thought afterward.

Andrea and our dramaturg Cori Ellison sat down with composer Augusta Read Thomas and librettist Leslie Dunton Downer to learn more about their alchemical process of working together on a new opera, influences and nuances of story, and what happens next with this new opera.

Sweet Potato Kicks the Sun will premiere in Santa Fe, NM in October 2019.


If you are new to Key Change, we recommend going back to listen to the first 8 episodes of Season 1 for even more OFAV context.

Episode 3 is a first introduction to Sweet Potato Kicks the Sun with composer Augusta Read Thomas and beatbox artist Nicole Paris.

If you can’t right this minute, don’t worry! We’ll catch you up.


Key Change is a production of The Santa Fe Opera in collaboration with Opera for All Voices.

Produced and edited by Andrea Klunder at The Creative Impostor Studios

Hosts: Andrea Fellows Walters and Brandon Neal

Audio Engineer: Kabby at Kabby Sound Studios in Santa Fe

Theme music by Rene Orth with Corrie Stallings, mezzo-soprano, and Joe Becktell, cello.

Cover art by David Tousley

Special music licensing from

Special thanks to the Reva and David Logan Center for the Arts at the University of Chicago, Reba Cafarelli, Cori Ellison, Andrea Klunder and Aliyah Rich for recording our audience reactions and Shannon Harris for recording our interviews in Chicago.

OFAV Consortium Members:  Lyric Opera for Kansas City, Minnesota Opera, Opera Theatre of Saint Louis, San Francisco Opera, Sarasota Opera and Seattle Opera.

This podcast is made possible due to the generous funding from the Melville Hankins Family Foundation, the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, and an OPERA America Innovation Grant, supported by the Ann and Gordon Getty Foundation.  

To learn more about Opera for all voices, visit us at