This Sunday, as you are probably already aware, marks the 10th anniversary of the attack against our nation that resulted in nearly 3,000 deaths in New York, NY, Arlington, VA, and Shanksville, PA. There will be many commemorations across the country for those who died in the attacks.

A small sample:

  • We Will Never Forget, with choir and brass ensemble, at Mary, Queen of the Universe Shrine in Orlando, Florida;
  • In Oceanside, California, a free event with concerts and tribute speakers;
  • A 10-Year Rembrance Service in McHenry, Illinois, featuring a patriotic medley, group singing and live music;
  • A memorial concert, featuring the Ridgewood Concert Band, Ridgewood Symphony and baritone soloist Robert Prowse, in Ridgewood, New Jersey;
  • The Cathedral Choir, Soloists and Chamber Orchestra performing Mozart’s Requiem in Hartford, Connecticut.

In and around Albuquerque, there’s a memorial run and tribute, a special performance of Karl Jenkins' "The Armed Man: A Mass for Peace” at Sue Cleveland High School in Rio Rancho, and a Commemorative Concert for a Changed World in Madrid, to name a few.

Live music, it seems, is in high demand this weekend. When people require solace or tribute, they often turn to the musicians among us to help them express their deepest emotions.

Quite often, musicians get called on to help us through the high and low points of our lives: weddings, funerals, graduations. (Ask a musician if he or she knows “The Wedding March” or “Pomp and Circumstance” and you’ll probably get a laugh and a nod.) Other musicians — or even the same musicians — play or sing or conduct choirs at church services around town. Music, it would  seem, adds a little power to our prayer. This is how so many of our musicians make a living: by patching together a set of recurring, low-paying jobs with other, occasional (mostly) low-paying jobs. Many also teach.

For the musicians playing this weekend, this is work. Alone, they will have practiced their parts for the pieces to be played, then rehearsed them with other musicians to make sure they all agree on tempo, volume, the general approach to the piece and more. Their performances this weekend may or may not be paying jobs. Musicians are often asked to volunteer their time and talents.

If you attend any tributes this weekend, especially those that include a musical performance, thank the musicians for their contribution to the event. Let them know you appreciate their efforts on behalf of the community and the nation. It doesn't matter whether or not they're getting paid. They still deserve to know you appreciate their part of the entire commemoration and what they do for our world.

Terry S. Davis
Popejoy Hall 

Views: 59

Comment by Kathy Wimmer on September 9, 2011 at 11:33am
I always enjoy your posts, Terry, but I especially like todays!  Thanks!
Comment by Laura A. Maness on September 9, 2011 at 11:51am
Music is so powerful. It expresses where words fail. I'm not a musician, but I'm ever so grateful for the gifts they give. Thank you.

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