The AO's Discovery Series is one of the highlights of what they do.  I've seen some wonderful music theater experiences in this series, and the most recent is Charlie Parker's Yardbird.  I wish I'd had time to read the program notes before the show, because the biographical information would have helped me to follow the story better.  It's a series of events from Parker's life in a libretto by Bridgette A. Wimberly, who evidently did a considerable amount of research.  The story is not the strong point, though.  Daniel Schnyder has written a really fine score, and the young artists hired by the AO to sing it were extraordinary.

I cannot say that this score could not use a bit of trimming.  The last aria for Charlie Parker was beautifully sung by Martin Bakari, but it was an unnecessary flourish at the end of the show.  His complete absorption in the role was accompanied by the voice that could deliver the demanding singing it required.  Angela Brown debuted the role of Addie Parker in 2015, and has sung it several times since.  She was magnificent in the role of Parker's mother.  Both Maria Valdes and Chrystal Willams were wonderful as two of Parker's wives, and the rest of the cast was stellar as well.

Bringing wonderful young artists and new works to Atlanta is just the best thing ever.  I love Cosi, Carmen, Trovatore, and Boheme, but I know them by heart.  These fresh new works are what music theater is all about.