NEW ORLEANS (October 9, 2013) — The Louisiana Philharmonic Orchestra, in partnership with The National WWII Museum, will present a Veterans Day evening concert honoring those who have served in the United States Armed Forces. "Honoring our Heroes," presented by Morgan Stanley, features the world premiere of "Dreams of the Fallen," a compelling new composition for piano, chorus and orchestra, by award-winning composer Jake Runestad.
The concert takes place at 7:00 pm on November 11 in the US Freedom Pavilion: The Boeing Center at The National WWII Museum. Tickets are $45 General Admission. The event will be streamed live and can be viewed free at www.LPOmusic.com.
"World War II began more than 70 years ago," noted Gordon "Nick" Mueller, Ph.D., president and CEO of The National WWII Museum. "We have seen how that epic conflict forever affected every man and woman who served on the battlefront and the Home Front. Our military service members face similar challenges today when they come home. This powerful new musical work pays tribute to all who have sacrificed in service to our country."
Featuring acclaimed pianist Jeffrey Biegel and the Symphony Chorus of New Orleans, "Dreams of the Fallen" conveys honor, respect and gratitude to those serving in the military, past and present. "While we, the public, are familiar with epic stories of heroism and of intense loss, we hear very little about the 'afterwards' of the war experience," said Runestad. "Thousands of veterans struggle to assimilate back into everyday life after living through a traumatic wartime experience. We hear very little of the continued struggles that these soldiers experience and so I hope to shine a light on their stories with this new musical work."
Inspiration for the composition was drawn from award-winning poet and United States Army veteran Brian Turner, who has written two poetry collections inspired by his experiences serving abroad. "I came across these works and was entranced by the immediacy of Brian's language and the powerful re-telling of his war experiences," said Runestad. "I knew that the power of his words paired with a large musical ensemble could touch people in an entirely new way and bring his important stories to life."
According to Runestad, Turner's poetry will be performed by the choir while the piano solo, representing the one who has experienced war, provides an emotional response to the chorus. The orchestra creates a sonic landscape as the music progresses through three stages of the war experience: pre-deployment, overseas service and post-deployment.
"I have a very special relationship with the LPO, and we have done other new works by today's composers, in addition to traditional repertoire," said Biegel. "New Orleans is an ideal location for this premiere, being the home of The National WWII Museum. It is my hope that, in the years ahead, this new composition will reflect the hearts and souls of our military, and become a staple of the repertoire in tribute to the many men and women who have served in the military, here and abroad, and to those serving in the future."
In addition to "Dreams of the Fallen," the LPO will also perform "Fanfare for the Common Man" and "Lincoln Portrait" by Aaron Copland; and "Belle of the Ball," "Blue Tango," and "Bugler’s Holiday" by Leroy Anderson.
Tickets are $45 for general admission and available at www.LPOmusic.com or 504-523-6530.
The National WWII Museum tells the story of the American Experience in the war that changed the world — why it was fought, how it was won, and what it means today. Dedicated in 2000 as The National D-Day Museum and designated by Congress as America’s National WWII Museum, it celebrates the American Spirit, the teamwork, optimism, courage and sacrifice of the men and women who fought on the battlefront and the Home Front. For more information, call 877-813-3329 or 504-527-6012 or visit www.nationalww2museum.org. Follow us on Twitter at WWIImuseum or visit our Facebook fan page.