A celebrated singer talks about the need for artists in our society, how the arts spark creativity, and why we should fund the arts in schools.
Renée Fleming is an American soprano and one of the most celebrated musical ambassadors of our time. Her parents were both singing teachers and music formed an important part of her upbringing. A winner of the National Medal of Arts and a Fulbright Lifetime Achievement Award, she performs regularly in opera houses and concert halls worldwide. Her repertoire encompasses Handel, Mozart, Strauss, French and Italian opera, jazz, and indie rock. Known for bringing new audiences to classical music and opera, she has sung with Luciano Pavarotti, Andrea Bocelli, Sting, Lou Reed, Josh Groban, and the Muppets. She has performed for such events as the Nobel Peace Prize Ceremony, the Diamond Jubilee Concert for Queen Elizabeth at Buckingham Palace, and We Are One: The Inaugural Celebration at the Lincoln Memorial for President Obama. She was named the first-ever creative consultant at Lyric Opera of Chicago, artistic advisor to the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, and has participated in productions nominated for multiple Tony Awards, Best Picture Awards, and Best Soundtrack Awards.