Starting in in the 2015-16 season, the dynamics shifted. At Atlanta Opera in 2015, the work was directed for the first time by a combat veteran, Tomer Zvulun. This production then traveled to San Diego Opera, where the company engaged with active military personnel for the first time on such a scale. While SDO partnered with organizations like the USO and the Three Wise Men, Des Moines Metro Opera took things a step further, staging the work on the active military base Camp Dodge, where military personnel participated in the rehearsal process, advising the creative team in matters of authenticity.
As a result of these innovative and bold approaches by these companies, Soldier Songs has taken on a bridge-building function in these communities, connecting military and civilian audiences, pursuing empathetic pathways of communication, in ways not imagined when the piece was first composed.