All of the music in today’s performance has something to do with that resource so essential to life on this planet—water: what it means and how we use it. Rivers and streams represented a pathway to freedom for slaves. For the downtrodden or dispossessed, “crossing the river” described the pathway to a better life in heaven. For sailors, the sea is a source of both livelihood and adventure. Water continues to be used and referenced in religious ceremonies, as a symbol for the passage of time, and as a place that is missed and longed for.
Here in New York State, we recently celebrated the bicentennial of the start of construction on the Erie Canal, a monumental undertaking that still allows for the transport of goods and people between the Atlantic Ocean and the Great Lakes. The canal led to the greater and quicker development of the interior of the continent. HMC’s accompanist and composer-in-residence, Al Fedak, has arranged “Low Bridge” (The Erie Canal Song) especially for today’s performance.
So, step into our musical boat, and join our journey “On the Water.” The music will flow and carry you to new places of insight, ferry you to tears of remembrance, and hopefully transport you to an elemental area of your being!