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(Hybrid) The State of the Arts with Missy Mazzoli, Royce Vavrek, and Nia Franklin

Wed March 20 @ 19 h 30 - 20 h 30


Art, advocacy, and the liberatory power of creative expression: dive into the current landscape of the arts with three of the most prominent voices of the new artistic generation.

Join Cultural Fellows Missy Mazzoli and Royce Vavrek in conversation with Composer-in-Residence Nia Franklin as they consider art in, about, and for the twenty-first century. In this exclusive roundtable bringing together three major figures of the new artistic generation, we will consider the ongoing vitality of art, and the challenges artists, and art institutions, face. They will examine the performing arts in dialogue with contemporary writing, the socio-political stakes of artistic practice, the role of the artist in relation to modernity, and the capacity of art to give shape to the future.

About the speakers:

Nia Imani Franklin is a composer and singer whose music has been performed by the Dallas Symphony Orchestra, Friction Quartet, Saskatoon Symphony Orchestra, Orpheus Chamber Orchestra, and many others. Previous Composer-in-Residence tenures include Music Academy of the West in Santa Barbara, California and Festival Napa Valley where she was awarded the Darioush and Shahpar Khaledi Prize for Excellence and Innovation in Classical Music. Her 2021 project, “Extended”, featured an assortment of all-original RnB songs, and her orchestra piece, “Chrysalis Extended”,  which has 3.7 million views on her TikTok profile.

Grammy-nominated composer Missy Mazzoli was deemed “one of the more consistently intentive, surprising composers now working in New York” (The New York Times) and “Brooklyn’s post-millennial Mozart” (Time Out New York). Mazzoli was the Mead Composer-in-Residence at the Chicago Symphony Orchestra from 2018-2021, and from 2015-2018 she was the Composer-in-Residence with Opera Philadelphia. Mazzoli’s music has been performed internationally by Kronos Quartet, Norwegian National Opera, eighth blackbird, pianist Emanual Ax, Opera Philadelphia, LA Opera, New York City Opera, the Detroit Symphony, the LA Philharmonic, the American Composers Orchestra, the Boston Symphony, JACK Quartet, cellist Maya Beiser, violinist Jennifer Koh, Dublin’s Crash Ensemble, the Sydney Symphony, and many others. In 2018 she made history as one of the first two women to be commissioned by the Metropolitan Opera. 

Royce Vavrek is an Alberta-born librettist and lyricist who has been called “the indie Hofmannsthal” (The New Yorker) and “one of the most celebrated and sought after librettists in the world” (CBC Radio). His opera “Angel’s Bone” with composer Du Yun was awarded the 2017 Pulitzer Prize. Upcoming commissions include “Agnes” for Icelandic Opera (with Daníel Bjarnason),“Lincoln in the Bardo” for The Metropolitan Opera (with Missy Mazzoli), “Fanny andAlexander” for La Monnaie (with Mikael Karlsson), “Indians on Vacation” for EdmontonOpera/Against the Grain (with Ian Cusson) and “My Family // Cambodia, 1975” (with Vivian Fung) supported by the Canada Council for the Arts.


In March, the Library is delighted to be hosting Reverberations: Literature Out Loud, a festival spotlighting innovations in the arts. In a series of concerts, conversations, and workshops, artists and authors are coming together to celebrate the history of storytelling and sound. Learn more about the festival and discover other events.

Reverberations is organized in partnership with the Opéra Comique and with the generous support of Festival Napa Valley, the American Center for Arts and Culture, and the Florence Gould Foundation.

Important information: The discussion will be available both online and in person. While the conversation will happen in person (the speakers will appear in the Reading Room), the Library will stream the conversation on Zoom for a live viewing experience. Both in-person and online attendees will be able to pose questions.

Please note, clocks moved forward in the US on 10 March, but do not move forward in France until 31 March: If you are attending a virtual or hybrid program from a US time zone, the time difference will be one hour less between 10 March and 31 March, and will return to normal on 31 March.

Attendance at this event constitutes permission for your photograph or video to be taken at the event and used by the American Library in Paris for marketing, promotional, pedagogical, or other purposes.

Evenings with an Author are free and open to the public (with a 10€ suggested donation)
thanks to the generous support of Gregory Annenberg Weingarten of GRoW @ Annenberg.


Wed March 20
19 h 30 min - 20 h 30 min
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(Hybrid) The State of the Arts with Missy Mazzoli, Royce Vavrek, and Nia Franklin
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