Music of Remembrance Programs
Mainstage Concerts at Benaroya Hall
MOR presents two major concerts annually in the Illsley Ball Nordstrom Recital Hall at Seattle's Benaroya Hall, marking the anniversary of Kristallnacht (The Night of Broken Glass) each fall, and Holocaust Remembrance Day each spring. These chamber music programs combine vocal and chamber music with works in popular cabaret and traditional folk styles, music from the time of the Holocaust with contemporary Holocaust-inspired compositions.
Sparks of Glory Education Outreach Programs
Sparks of Glory, MOR's musical witness outreach series, is presented free to the public. These free concerts with commentary offer performances by some of the region's leading chamber musicians, with Mina Miller discussing Holocaust history, the composers and musicians, and their music. Thanks to the success of this initiative, our audience for live performances has more than doubled to around 2,000 listeners annually. MOR's inclusive, themed programs bring together chamber music lovers, Holocaust survivors, gays and lesbians, students, civil rights activists, and senior citizens for shared experiences. In addition, MOR offers 6-8 in-school educational programs to local and regional middle and high schools and colleges each year.
Since its inception, Music of Remembrance has built an international reputation for its commitment to commissioning and programming contemporary music and recently, dance. To date, MOR has commissioned and premiered fourteen works from composers Aharon Harlap, Jake Heggie, Lori Laitman, Thomas Pasatieri, Paul Schoenfield, Gerard Schwarz, David Stock, and Betty Olivero. We have also commissioned two dance pieces from choreographer Donald Byrd. Our newest commission, "Another Sunrise" from composer Jake Heggie and librettist Gene Scheer, premieres in May, 2012.
Recent Successes and Current Challenges
Extending our work beyond the contexts of live performances and classrooms, MOR recently produced a 52-minute documentary film, "The Boys of Terezín," which is part of our larger VEDEM project. The film documents the 2010 reunion of four elderly survivors, who had -- with other teenage prisoners in Terezin concentration camp -- kept a secret journal in which they published writings and illustrations each Friday night for 2 years. The men reunited -- after 65 years -- for the world premiere in Seattle of MOR's musical commission, Vedem,
composed by Lori Laitman. Since the film's premiere in October 2011 at the Seattle Art Museum, it has been shown at film festivals in Sydney and Melbourne, Australia, West Palm Beach and Miami, and New Jersey, Seattle, Toronto and other locales.
With MOR's dramatic growth, our work has expanded far beyond the scope of our original organization, and our continued success depends on building sustainable organizational capacities. During 2011 we have committed to ensuring MOR's long-term sustainability by strengthening its infrastructure, expanding audiences, and creating new strategic and leadership succession plans.