The opening concert of this year's Composition Festival features the world premiere performance of guest composer William Averitt's Easter, 1906 performed by the MSU Chorale under the direction of Dr. Cameron LaBarr.
Easter, 1906 recounts the dramtic true story of the lynching of three innocent black men in Springfield, Missouri, over Easter weekend, 1906. Poet Robert Bode has collected together material from historical documents of the period and created new poems that reflect upon this tragic event. Composer William Averitt has set these words to music for double choir, spoken narration, piano four-hands and two percussionists. Easter, 1906 is intended to be a cautionary reminder of the profound evil that can arise from unchecked racism and mob rule.