Talking about art with Jacob Bancks

In partnership with the non-profit organization Living Proof Exhibit, the Quad City Symphony Orchestra has commissioned a new opera, Karkinoscomposed by Dr. Jacob Bancks which will be performed on February 12, 2022.

Starring soprano Sarah Shafer as the Empress, mezzo-soprano Kelly Hill as the Maid and baritone Nathaniel Sullivan as the Angel, the opera tells the story of a empress who is forced to fight against an invisible monster, Karkinos. This multimedia work also features dancers and choristers from Augustana, in addition to a chamber orchestra.

The epic battle against Karkinos, which translates to cancer in Greek, is an apt metaphor for an opera commissioned by the Living Proof Exhibit, an organization dedicated to bringing the therapeutic benefits of the arts to those affected by cancer.

Listen to the conversation here with Dr. Jacob Bancks, composer and associate professor of music at Augustana College, on the many deeply meaningful conversations he had with cancer survivors and their families that inspired him to create this work, the challenge inherent in writing a libretto in addition to musical composition, and why opera is an accessible art form that everyone should enjoy.

The show will take place on Saturday, February 12, 2022 at the Bartlett Performing Arts Center, 3600 Avenue of the Cities, Moline, IL at 7:30 p.m. A pre-concert conversation will take place one hour before the performance for the participants. Living Proof Exhibit will also host an in-hall art exhibit that can be viewed before and after the performance. Both in-person and live + digital access tickets can be purchased here.

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