I Dream is a fully through-composed opera by Douglas Tappin (librettist, lyricist, composer), based on the life of Martin Luther King Jr.

The world premiere of this "Rhythm and Blues Opera" opened in July 2010 on the Alliance Stage of the Woodruff Arts Center in Atlanta, Georgia.[1]

Original cast and creative team

With choreography by Dawn Axam, and designs by Kat Conley (set), Joseph Futral (lighting), Shilla Benning (costumes), and Bobby Johnston (sound). The producers were Dej Mahoney, Cedric Perrier, Tim Bowen, and Douglas Tappin.[1]

The cast included:


I Dream opened to mostly positive reviews from both the press and those involved with the civil rights movement. RollingOut.com said: "The life of Dr. King as chronicled in the stage musical I Dream, is right on time as a reminder of what the fight was for. The dynamically talented cast delivered stirring performances to move audience members through each riveting scene."[2] Creative Loafing reported that "Tappin's hugely ambitious world premiere follows the example of Broadway's big, rock-influenced musicals such as Jesus Christ Superstar, Evita, and Les Misérables."[3] The Huffington Post stated: "[The show brought] some of the heartiest former Civil Rights activists in the house to tears, before raising them to their feet at the finale for, perhaps, the greatest standing ovation the show will ever receive."[4]

Nominated in 10 categories for Atlanta's 2009/2010 Suzi Bass Award,[5] I Dream won in the Outstanding World Premiere (Play or Musical) category.


A concept album of I Dream entitled I Dream (The Concept Recording) was recorded in 2015, featuring Quentin Darrington as Martin and AverySunshine as oretta– released for digital download and streaming, including on iTunes, Google Play, and Spotify.[6]

Additional productions

See also


  1. ^ a b "I Dream Takes the Stage in Atlanta 7/9–31 at Woodruff Arts Center". BroadwayWorld. Retrieved September 16, 2019.
  2. ^ "Jasmine Guy-Directed 'I Dream' Premieres: Do We Need Another King Story?". Archived from the original on July 13, 2010. Retrieved July 22, 2010.
  3. ^ Curt Holman (July 14, 2010). "Theater Review – MLK story sings in sprawling musical I Dream". Creative Loafing. Retrieved September 16, 2019.
  4. ^ "I Dream: Lowery & Young Join King Family at World Premiere of New MLK opera". HuffPost. July 15, 2010. Retrieved September 16, 2019.
  5. ^ "The Suzi Bass Awards – Current Winners". Archived from the original on August 27, 2012. Retrieved December 13, 2010.
  6. ^ Yoba, Akoshia (July 19, 2016). "I Dream: A Soundtrack of History". HuffPost. Retrieved September 16, 2019.
  7. ^ "I Dream: A Rhythm and Blues Opera". www.kennedy-center.org. Retrieved September 16, 2019.
  8. ^ "Toledo Opera Past Seasons of Toledo Opera". www.toledoopera.org. Retrieved January 12, 2021.