Dutch National Opera presents

We Shall Not Be Moved Daniel Bernard Roumain

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Please note! This performance is in Stadsschouwburg Amsterdam

We Shall Not Be Moved

Duration 2:05

Breaks 1

By Daniel Bernard Roumain

Language Engels

Surtitles Nederlands en Engels

This chamber opera is an indictment against the structural inequality encountered by the black community in Philadelphia (but also in other places).
They have to deal with the constant threat of violence (from both police and street gangs), rape and the marginalisation of people with a gender-fluid identity.

The story

On the run after a series of tragic incidents, five teenagers from North Philadelphia seek refuge in a deserted building in West Philly. It turns out to be the former headquarters of the black liberation group MOVE, which was blown up by the police in 1985, killing 11 people including 5 children, and devastating the district. When the young squatters come into contact with the spirits that haunt the building, they see their refuge as their destiny and gradually come into action.


This production, which was premiered in September 2017, in Philadelphia, is an ambitious collaboration between composer Daniel Bernard Roumain, activist and spoken word artist Marc Bamuthi Joseph and renowned director-choreographer Bill T. Jones. We Shall Not Be Moved is urgent and topical, and presents a smooth crossover between spoken word, contemporary dance, video projections, classical music, jazz and R&B.


‘About as omnivorous as a contemporary artist gets’ wrote The New York Times about composer Daniel Bernard Roumain, who has worked with composer Philip Glass, tap dancer Savion Glover and singer Lady Gaga. Bill T. Jones is a famous choreographer, dancer, theatre maker and writer. His successful music theatre production Fela!, about Fela Kuti, was previously presented in Amsterdam.

In December 2017, The New York Times voted We Shall Not Be Moved one of the 'Best Classical Music Performances of 2017', and the best opera production of 2017.

Opera Forward Festival

We Shall Not Be Moved is part of the programme of the Opera Forward Festival. This festival explores the future of opera by presenting leading new work.  See the complete programme.

Team, Cast and Chorus

Musical director
Viswa Subbaraman
Marc Bamuthi Joseph
Director, choreographer and dramaturge
Bill T. Jones
Matt Saunders
Liz Prince
Robert Wierzel
Jorge Cousineau
Sound design
Robert Kaplowitz
Assistant director
Seth Hoff
Assistant choreographer
Raphael Xavier
Lauren Whitehead
Kirstin Chávez
John Blue
John Holiday
John Little
Daniel Shirley
John Mack
Adam Richardson
John Henry
Aubrey Allicock
Michael Bishop, Duane Lee Holland, Jr., Tendayi Kuumba, Caci Cole Pritchett
Voice of Reporter
Pat Ciarrocchi
Mike J. Dees

Founding Partners Opera Forward Festival




Productiepartner Opera Forward Festival


Partners Opera Forward Festival