The Louisiana Philharmonic’s performance of “Dreams of the Fallen,” Jake Runestad’s (MM ’11, Composition) work for solo piano, chorus, & orchestra, was awarded Best Performance of New Classical Music at the Tribute to the Classical Arts in New Orleans. Performed at the National WWII Museum in November, “Dreams of the Fallen” is a setting of poems by Iraq War veteran and award-winning poet Brian Turner.
The Cincinnati Vocal Arts Ensemble and conductor Craig Hella Johnson will give the world premiere of Runestad’s “Why The Caged Bird Sings” on May 2. A setting of “Sympathy” by Paul Laurence Dunbar, this work was commissioned as a part of Johnson’s first season as artistic director.
Dr. James Bass and the Master Chorale of Tampa Bay will give the world premiere of Runestad’s “We Can Mend the Sky” – a setting of poetry by 14-year-old Warda Mohamed, which explores her experience leaving war-torn Somalia and moving to Minnesota. Using Mohamed’s poem and two Somali proverbs, “We Can Mend the Sky” is a musical depiction of one’s journey as an immigrant and an affirmation of hope as we all embrace the diversity around us.