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Opera Roanoke Presents Glory Denied

Based on the true story of America’s longest-held prisoner from the Vietnam War

Opera Roanoke will present the American opera, Glory Denied, on February 24 and 26 at the Jefferson Center.  The opera chronicles the life of Col. Jim Thompson, America’s longest-held prisoner from the Vietnam War.  Col. Thompson was held captive in the jungles of southeast Asia for nine years, spending five of those years in solitary confinement. His only source of strength were letters sent to him by his wife Alyce, prior to his capture.

After enduring unimaginable hardships in captivity from 1964-73, Col. Thompson returned to a home and country he hardly recognized. This opera explores family dynamics during a turbulent time in our nation’s history through the lens of only two characters; Jim Thompson and his wife Alyce, portrayed by two sopranos, a tenor, and a baritone.

Opera Roanoke will present this work to honor the stories and perspectives of veterans in the community. Prior to both performances, Opera Roanoke will host a Veteran’s Fair in the Jefferson Center Atrium to bring awareness of veteran support groups to those who may be interested in identifying additional resources and volunteer opportunities.

Two additional events will lead up to the mainstage performances of Glory Denied in February.  On February 11 at 10am, Opera Roanoke will partner with the Grandin Theater for a classic film showing of the Vietnam War-era movie, Platoon.  Free coffee and donuts will be provided beginning at 9:15am and a short lecture on the film and stage adaptations of the war will begin at 9:30am.

On February 16 at 7pm, Opera Roanoke will partner with Hoot and Holler, Roanoke’s only live storytelling event, to share stories of local veterans and their families, with music from the opera. Partial proceeds from this event will benefit Healing Strides, an equine assisted therapy program in Boones Mill, VA.

All veterans are eligible for free tickets to the Glory Denied performances through Opera Roanoke’s Free Community Ticket Program.  Reservations can be made in advance by emailing [email protected] or calling (540) 982-2742.



February 11

Classic Film Showing: Platoon at Grandin Theater | 10am    Pre-film Lecture | 9:30am | FREE


February 16

Voices of Veterans at Grandin Theater | 7pm | Tickets $20


February 24 & 26

Glory Denied at Jefferson Center | Fri 7:30pm | Sun 2:30pm | Tickets start at $20

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