How did this collaboration work? Release, by Danielle Williams, was the first piece of the suite to have been written. This is a musical setting of the words of a 2012 Pine Street Inn-Shattuck Shelter guest. She wrote, “The music reminds me that I am still human and renews my ambition to resolve my circumstances.” The poetry in her words compelled me to seek a composer to set these words to music, which Danielle Williams did in 2016. Release was performed in shelter and public concerts in the autumn of 2016. Audiences loved it. In particular, a shelter audience member said, “This is great…the words of someone who walked in my shoes inspired a new piece of music!”
Finally, composers Yu-Hui Chang and Francine Trester were inspired by the beautiful statements audience members have written following SMB concerts over many years. These composers have created The Path In Front of Me and In Our Own Words. Both of these movements include words of Shelter Music Boston audience members. The August 2018 performances of In Our Own Words even provide shelter audience members who would like to join the performance with an opportunity to participate in the concert by reading the quotes from previous audience members before the musicians perform Fran’s music.
The sublime music of W.A. Mozart and Leonard Bernstein, whose 100th birthday is being celebrated this year, will also be heard on SMB August concerts. ALL of the music reflects the creativity of many individuals, some with famous names, and some whose names we don’t know. I believe that the music of these world famous composers belongs on the same program as the collaborative creations of Shelter Music Boston audiences and musicians.
The August 2018 SMB concerts celebrate creativity and collaboration. We are grateful to the Harvard Musical Association for their support of this empowering performance. And thank you for your interest and investment in this unique project!