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Chamber opera at Kennedy Center composed by Alexandria native

B.E. Boykin's "Oshun" is part of the Kennedy Center's American Opera Initiative.

WASHINGTON — Alexandria native B.E. Boykin has been playing piano since she was just 7 years old. This weekend, the Washington National Opera at the Kennedy Center will showcase Boykin's first chamber opera.

The opera is called "Oshun." It premieres at the Kennedy Center on Jan. 21 as part of the American Opera Initiative (AOI).

Now in its 10th season, the AOI is a commissioning program for contemporary American opera. In addition to Boykin, AOI will spotlight Jens Ibsen and Silen Wellington's short operas.

Boykin's "Oshun" tells the story of an African goddess, of perseverance, inner power and awakenings. 

"From 'Oshun'’s story we learn that, with help from those who love us well, we can believe and manifest our inner strength even in our darkest hour," Kennedy Center's description reads.

Boykin tells WUSA9 she is excited for her chamber opera to hit the stage.

"As a composer you live for moments like this," Boykin said. "I never thought in a million year I would compose a short opera, but here we are," Boykin said.

Tickets are available here.

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