Sonya Headlam and Rebecca Cypess: Transatlantic Musical Heritage

The musicians explore the music and times of Black classical composers Ignatius Sancho, Francis Johnson, and Joseph Bologne.

Soprano Sonya Headlam performs music that spans centuries, from the Baroque era to the present. As a soloist, she has garnered acclaim on prestigious stages across the United States. Recent highlights include her debut with the Philadelphia Orchestra in Handel's Messiah, her Severance Hall debut with conductor Jeannette Sorrell and Apollo's Fire performing Mozart and Joseph Bologne Chevalier de Saint Georges, and joining the North Carolina Symphony for Handel’s Messiah and Beethoven's Symphony No. 9. She has collaborated with ensembles such as the New World Symphony, the Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra, TENET Vocal Artists, and others. This season, Sonya looks forward to making her solo debuts with the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra, the New York Philharmonic, and the National Arts Centre Orchestra in Ottawa. 

Rebecca Cypess is a musicologist and historical keyboardist specializing in the history, performance practices, and cultural contexts of music in 17th- and 18th-century Europe. Her work as a scholar is informed by her experience as a performer, which includes three albums as leader of the Raritan Players. Cypess is Associate Dean for Academic Affairs and Professor at Rutgers University.


The MetLife Foundation Music of the Americas concert series is made possible by the generous support of Presenting Sponsor MetLife Foundation. 

The Spring 2024 Music program is also supported, in part, by the Howard Gilman Foundation, by public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council, by the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of the Office of the Governor and the New York State Legislature, and by The Fan Fox and Leslie R. Samuels Foundation, by the Alice M. Ditson Fund of Columbia University, and by the Mex-Am Cultural Foundation.

New York Council on the Arts             Howard Gilman Foundation