Marc Bamuthi Joseph is a 2017 TED Global Fellow, an inaugural recipient of the Guggenheim Social Practice initiative, and an honoree of the United States Artists Rockefeller Fellowship. He is also the winner of the 2011 Herb Alpert Award in Theatre, and an inaugural recipient of the Doris Duke Performing Artist Award. In pursuit of affirmations of Black life in the public realm, he co-founded the Life is Living Festival for Youth Speaks, and created the installation “Black Joy in the Hour of Chaos” for Creative Time. Joseph’s opera libretto, We Shall Not Be Moved, was named one of 2017’s “Best Classical Music Performances” by The New York Times. His evening length work, /peh-LO-tah/, successfully toured across North America for three years, including at BAM’s Harvey Theater as a part of the 2017 Next Wave Festival. His piece, “The Just and the Blind” investigates the crisis of over-sentencing in the prison industrial complex, and premiered at a sold out performance at Carnegie Hall in March 2019. Bamuthi is currently at work on commissions for the Perelman Center, Yale University, and the Washington National Opera as well as a new collaboration with NYC Ballet Artistic Director Wendy Whelan. He joins Oprah Winfrey, Angela Davis, and a star-studded cast in HBO’s screen adaptation of “Between the World and Me” by Ta-Nehesi Coates, premiering in the Fall of 2020. Formerly the Chief of Program and Pedagogy at YBCA in San Francisco, Bamuthi currently serves as the Vice President and Artistic Director of Social Impact at The Kennedy Center.
The Sphinx Organization is the social justice organization dedicated to transforming lives through the power of diversity in the arts. Sphinx’s four program areas – Education & Access, Artist Development, Performing Artists, and Arts Leadership – form a pipeline that develops and supports diversity and inclusion in classical music at every level: music education, artists performing on stage, the repertoire and programing being performed, the communities represented in audiences, and the artistic and administrative leadership within the field.
"The Sphinx Organization is honored to support Bamuthi as the keynote speaker for the 2021 AAAE Virtual Conference." - Afa S. Dworkin, President & Artistic Director