Composer Adolphus Hailstork has written a wide variety music that blend musical ideas from the African American and European traditions including works for piano, chorus, organ, chamber ensembles, solo voice, band, orchestra and opera. He was born in Rochester, New York and grew up in Albany. He took piano lessons as a child and began writing music at an early age. Hailstork studied music at Howard University, Manhattan School of Music, and Michigan State University and taught at Youngstown State and Norfolk State Universities. He is now Eminent Scholar and Professor of Music at Old Dominion University in Norfolk, VA. The Cincinnati May Festival performed Hailstork’s large scale choral work, Earthwise, in 2006. The Cincinnati Opera premiered Rise for Freedom in 2007.