Paula M. Kimper (Composer, Conductor) is a graduate of the Eastman School of Music and the leader of the Paula Kimper Ensemble. She has been active in New York City for over 30 years as a composer of opera, theater, dance, film and song. Her operatic output beyond the 1998 PATIENCE AND SARAH includes THE CAPTIVATION OF EUNICE WILLIAMS (2004), followed by THE BRIDGE OF SAN LUIS REY, based on Thornton Wilder’s novel (2007). Ms. Kimper’s latest opera TRUTH, AN AMERICAN OPERA ABOUT SOJOURNER TRUTH, premiered in 2012 at the Academy of Music in Northampton, MA, and toured nationally. Kimper has received many commissions from established American musical institutions, including Downtown Music Productions, The Walt Whitman Project, American Opera Projects, Opera America, and others. She is currently a Columbia University Community Scholar.
Wende Persons (Librettist) was recently named the managing director of Classical Music Rising, a project developed to shape the future of classical music radio. She is also a writer and a marketing consultant specializing in new media outreach for classical music. Her clients include Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts, the Orchestra of St. Luke’s, the leading online classical music retailer ArkivMusic.com, American Public Media’s NEA-funded Classical Music Initiative, National Public Radio, Public Radio International, and she co-produced the debut CDs and website for Rob Kapilow’s “What Makes It Great?” series for Artemis Records/Vanguard Classics. Previously, she worked in different capacities for such organizations as WQXR, Universal Classics Group, Deutsche Grammophon, and the Eastman School of Music. She is currently an Adjunct Professor of Marketing for the Performing Arts at NYU’s Steinhardt School.
Isabel Miller (real name Alma Routsong; 1924-1998) was an American novelist. After moving to New York City in the 1960s, she became an activist. She was an officer in the New York chapter of Daughters of Bilitis – the first lesbian civil and political rights organization in the United States – and she was arrested during a DOB police raid. Routsong became well known for her novels involving lesbian themes and after publishing her first two books under her real name, she used the pen name of Isabel Miller, which is a combination of the anagram “Lesbia” and her mother’s maiden name. Patience & Sarah was the first recipient of the Stonewall Book Award. Founded in 1971, the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, and Transgender Round Table created the award to celebrate books of exceptional merit that relate to LGBT issues.