The Boston Modern Orchestra Project and Artistic Director Gil Rose during a recording session in Mechanics Hall in Worcester, Massachusetts. Photo courtesy of BMOP records at Mechanics Hall.

Boston Modern Orchestra Project, perhaps best known for commissioning and recording music by living composers, has announced a new initiative with the Boston-based Odyssey Opera company: “As Told By: History, Race, and Justice on the Opera Stage,” a five-year series of performances of operas by Black composers. Gil Rose is artistic director of both organizations. The series will launch in June 2022 with the New England premiere of Anthony Davis’s 1986 opera X: The Life and Times of Malcolm X, with bass-baritone Davóne Tines in the title role. Also planned are performances in 2023, 2024, and 2025, respectively, of Nkeiru Okoye’s 2014 Harriet Tubman: When I Crossed That Line to Freedom, William Grant Still’s 1949 Troubled Island, about Haitian revolutionary Jean-Jacques Dessalines, and Ulysses Kay’s 1991 Frederick Douglass. In 2026, BMOP and Odyssey Opera will perform the commissioned world premiere of an opera by Jonathan Bailey Holland about Martin Luther King Jr.’s years in Boston, framed by the journey to Selma, Alabama. The initiative will encompass recordings on BMOP’s record label, BMOP/sound, and education programs in partnership with Castle of Our Skins, the Boston-based organization dedicated to celebrating Black artistry through music.