His work with various Dance and Theatre groups over the years has developed his interest in bringing the multiple disciplines of text, music, drama, narrative and movement into one area, namely: Opera/Music Theatre.
Tunde wrote his first song at the age of fourteen when he composed Desdemona's willow song for a West-end production of Othello to Shakespeare's text. He used the Kora ballad, Tabarah as the inspiration for the song and it showed him how using his experience of diverse traditions can actually strengthen and en-power the music further.
In 1996 Tunde was commissioned to write 'All our Yesterdays', a piece for Opera Soprano, Tenor and Piano Trio by the Concordia Foundation, which was premiered in Caux, Switzerland.
In 1998 he composed a work entiled, 'The Spirit' scored for an Opera Soprano, Gospel Vocalist, Choir and Orchestra as part of the Emidy Project.
In 2000 he was commissioned by Wingfield Arts/ Eastern Orchestral Board to write 'The Passing Moments of Time', a song cycle for the Jazz singer, Jackie Dankworth, accompanied by a Jazz Quartet and String Quartet.
He also recorded the soundtrack for a documentary-film Hopes on the Horizon in which he bridged the Malian Operatic Vocal Tradition with Symphony orchestra for the first time.
In 2001 he was commissioned to write an Oratorio for the City of Milton Keynes including music and libretto involving a cast of over 200 performers. The piece entitled, 'Reflection on Future Hopes' was premiered at the Milton Keynes Theatre and was run for several days.
In 2003 he was commissioned by the Royal Opera House to write an aria to be included in their Nitro at the Opera season. He wrote the aria, 'What is my Fate?', which is part of a larger work that will be developed into a full chamber opera based on the biblical story of Esther at a later date.
During that same year he was also commissioned to contribute a piece for a BAC opera project entitled, 'Newsnight' which featured the work of eight contemporary composers using text taken from important contemporary historical moments reported on Newsnight. Tunde took the reports after the death of Princess Diana as his text to set to music and his work was entitled, 'The People's Princess' .
In 2004 Tunde completed setting the music to the Dub Poet, Mutabaruka's 'The Last Supper'. This epic 3-hour work was Tunde's first major opera and it was a cultural cross-over of Contemporary Classical, Reggae and African Sacred Music traditions which was reflected in both the music and the vocal styles.
In 2005 Tunde was commissioned by Gye Nyami to write an opera loosely based on the Stephen Lawrence story. After various librettos were put forward Tunde ended up working with a young writer Lawrence Jnr. to develop 'Cry of Innocence' which was another cross-over opera embracing both contemporary urban as well as the modern art music of both Europe and the African Diaspora.
During 2005 Tunde was also invited by the Prince Claus Foundation to develop his idea for a Sahel Opera with three other composers of African descent from around the world. Tunde went to Senegal and developed a 20-minute version of his new opera, 'Sundiata' in eight days with a new generation of some of Senegal 's best musicians and singers. The final performance, which was fully costumed and staged, was filmed by the Senegalese film-maker, Mousa Mbaye.
The Sahel Opera itself will now be developed by Tunde Jegede and the three other composers - Ze Manel, Nawal and Goo Ba - in collaboration with the music director, Wasis Diop. The Sahel Opera is to be premiered in Bamako, Mali in 2006 followed by a tour of Europe .