Kameron Locke

Artist, Educator, & Social Advocate

Kameron Locke (he/him) is an interdisciplinary performance artist, writer, classically trained tenor, and researcher-educator whose work explores and centers Afro-diasporic and LGBTQ+ experiences and realities through the intersections of music, text, performance, identity, and community work. His work navigates themes of resilience, belonging, and solidarity, drawing from rich experiences spanning continents and cultures.

As a performer, Locke creates immersive stories, weaving together music, song, spoken word, dance, theater, multimedia, and layering of sounds presenting these communities through binaries of strength and vulnerability, hidden and seen, silence and communication. Locke has performed work highlighting these themes internationally in such spaces as Gropius Bau and SAVVY Contemporary in Berlin, Germany, Cercle Cite in Luxembourg City, Luxembourg, Art Gallery New South Wales in Sydney, Australia, Deichtorhallen in Hamburg, Germany, and others. He starred in the main role as PHOTO in the premieres of Brook Andrew’s “post-traumatic play” GABAN in both Berlin, Germany and Sydney, Australia. In his past life as a chorister, Locke sang with small and large choruses, such as London Symphony Chorus, and in spaces such as the Royal Albert Hall, the Barbican, Philharmonie de Paris, Deichtorhallen, Elbphilharmonie, Concertgebouw, Chicago Symphony Orchestra, and more. He has sung under the baton of conductors like Sir Simon Rattle, Marin Alsop, Marc Albrecht, Mei-Ann Chen, Simon Halsey, Michael Tilson Thomas, Riccardo Muti, and others.

Community work, research, and education are central to Locke’s praxes. His grassroots initiatives include: Classical Inclusion, an after-school program in Chicago Public Libraries for students from low-income backgrounds in Chicago, Illinois; The Village, a music production workshop series for LGBTQ+ students at Goldsmiths College in London, UK; and the Black Reels Project, which was composed of the Black Reels Filmmaking Workshop and the Black Reels Film Festival, for Black Germans and immigrants in Berlin, Germany. He has presented research on classical music figures like Samuel Coleridge-Taylor and Avril Coleridge-Taylor and on arts-activism at the Wheeler Center in Melbourne, Australia, at Goldsmiths College, and musicology conferences like NABMSA. He has taught at the university level on utilizing non-traditional performance spaces and artistic concept-making.

As a writer, Locke writes about personal history, alternate realities, and Black and LGBTQ+ lives. He has published poetry, most recently with the third installment of Parabolis Virtualis: Neue, Queere Lyrik in Berlin, Germany. He has written a libretto, VIDA, of a three-part trilogy based on fictional queer characters. Locke, in collaboration with co-librettist Juliet Petrus and composer William Garfield Walker, is creating a three-act grand opera based on the true story of the Tuskegee Airmen, the complex journey by African-American men who faced battles with race at home and abroad to become vital heroes to the Axis Powers’ success in World War II. His theatre production “the Blacker the Berry / perhaps home is not a place but simply an irrevocable condition” will make its world premiere at the Kampnagel Internationales Sommerfestival 2024, in collaboration with Fleetstreet Theatre, in August 2024. It is a personal journey based on James Baldwin, the African-American writer who wrote about topics of race, identity, and sexuality, his friendship with his German editor, Fritz J. Raddatz, and their encounters with acceptance, reconciliation, and love. Locke infuses his self-reflections and experiences in relation to Baldwin's.

Locke received his MA in Musicology from Goldsmiths College, University of London and his BM in Classical Voice from the Chicago College of Performing Arts, Roosevelt University.