This week we mark the 10th anniversary of the historic attacks on the U.S. on September 11, 2001. Memory of traumatic events changes over time; while others will be recounting the facts and events of that day, we will recall some of the feelings it provoked by repeating a special program from the following week. Even after 10 years the wound remains tender, the fear it created remains present, and the hope for a better world remains a vision and a prayer.
It was an epoch-defining event that temporarily rendered everything else insignificant. Even our ordinary diet of violent media had not prepared us to comprehend the implacable hatred and disregard for life/ of this phantom enemy. Perhaps no single act in American history has raised more questions, more emotions, more tears.
In the weeks following the attacks, as we arose from our pain and began to move forward, we remained poised on the edge of catharsis — and it is in that spirit that we bring you a program called TERROR AND HOPE.
If spring is the season of hope, then it is fitting that in the spring of 1999, in advance of the Millenium, Sony Classical released a choral symphony by New York composer JONATHAN ELIAS, titled THE PRAYER CYCLE. As we did in 1999, this week we devote the entirety of Hearts of Space to this extraordinary music. But this week, it will sound different, feel different, and will have a different meaning.
JONATHAN ELIAS began writing THE PRAYER CYCLE in the period immediately before the birth of his first child. "I was excited by the possibilities for my child," he says, "but I also felt anxiety and sadness about the world she was about to enter. With all the wondrous advances of mankind, it was painful to acknowledge the other defining characteristic of the 20th century, which is more calculated and cold-blooded than any other period of recorded history. Is man's inhumanity to man as common in our nature as other forms of survival? With these thoughts and concerns, I began to write 'The Prayer Cycle.'"
The effect of this brilliant multi-cultural, multi-language production is extraordinarily powerful and appropriate. "Prayer," says composer Elias, "is what we turn to when the only thing we have left...is hope."
JONATHAN ELIAS' THE PRAYER CYCLE... a eulogy for the 20th century ...a prayer for the 21st... and a plea for a world where we have no choice but to get along — because anything else is unthinkable. TERROR AND HOPE...on this edition...of Hearts of Space.