Lyrics of Sunshine and Shadows
Steven M. Allen is an American composer, conductor, and ethnomusicologist. At Jackson State University in Jackson, Mississippi, he earned a bachelor's degree in music and studied conducting and composition under Robert L. Morris. In 2002, he relocated to Washington, D.C., to study composition and conducting at Howard University. His graduate studies include composition with Andrew Simpson and Steven Strunk at the Benjamin T. Rome School of Music, Catholic University of America; ethnomusicology with Kip Lornell, George Washington University; and choral conducting and pedagogy with James Jordan, Westminster Choir College, and William Weinert, Eastman School of Music. He earned master's and doctoral degrees from Catholic University of America. He has composed symphonic works and spirituals; art songs for voice and chamber ensembles; and an opera, Lyrics of Sunshine and Shadows: An Opera Based on the Lives and Love of Paul Laurence Dunbar and Alice Ruth Moore, is featured in the PBS documentary The Life and Times of Paul Laurence Dunbar, produced by Frederick Lewis, 2016. In 2014, his chamber opera The Poet: A Chamber Opera on the Life of Paul Laurence Dunbar made its world premiere in honor of Dunbar’s birthday and the opening of the newly renovated Paul Laurence Dunbar High School in Washington, D.C.
Allen, Steven M., "Lyrics of Sunshine and Shadows" (2009). Dunbar Music Archive. 365.