Detroit Opera showcases unique talents with ‘Xerxes’

Countertenor Key’mon Murrah and conductor Dame Jane Glover join CultureShift to discuss the show’s historical significance and more.

Dame Jane Glover, Ryan Patrick Hooper and Key'mon Murrah smile in WDET's main control room

Dame Jane Glover (left) and Key'mon Murrah (right) pose with CultureShift's Ryan Patrick Hooper in the WDET studios.

Under the leadership of Yuval Sharon, Detroit Opera has put on some groundbreaking productions, and another one opens this weekend.

Xerxes will have three performances at Detroit Opera, starting on Saturday, March 4 at 7:30 p.m. It tells the story of the ancient King Xerxes who may be the most powerful man in Persia, but he can’t get Romilda to marry him. It’s considered a masterpiece about love and the limits of power, and it features a powerhouse group of cast and creatives that are making it happen.

Key’mon Murrah is a fast-rising talent in the opera world, and he’s playing the countertenor playing the role of Xerxes. Conducting the show is Dame Jane Glover, a British conductor who is considered one of the world’s foremost interpreters of 18th century music. Murrah and Glover joined CultureShift to discuss the show’s historical significance and the unique talents they’re bringing to the stage.

“The cast is very diverse… I wouldn’t be here if I didn’t see that diversity on the stage the first time this was done. So I wish for the next little countertenor who wants to do the show later, to be in the audience.” — Key’mon Murrah, countertenor

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  • Ryan Patrick Hooper
    Ryan Patrick Hooper is the award-winning host of "In the Groove" on 101.9 WDET-FM Detroit’s NPR station. Hooper has covered stories for the New York Times, NPR, Detroit Free Press, Hour Detroit, SPIN and Paste magazine.