CONSTITUTION DAY CONCERT CELEBRATION FEATURES COMPOSITION PRIZE WINNER
A prize-winning composition by a CU-Boulder student that seeks to reflect in music what our founding fathers were feeling when they gathered to write the Constitution will be performed in a concert in celebration of Constitution Day, Sept. 17.
“Novus Ordo Seclorum” (New Order for the Ages), by Hunter Ewen, a master’s student in composition, will be featured in the Pendulum New Music Concert Series on Wednesday, Sept. 17 at 7:30 p.m. The concert, which opens with “Fanfare” by Daniel Kellogg, commissioned and performed by the CU Horn Choir, will be held in Grusin Music Hall. It will be free and open to the public, with a reception following.
Ewen’s piece won the Constitution Day composition competition cosponsored by CU-Boulder’s College of Music and the Institute for Ethical and Civic Engagement.
When composing the piece, Ewen set out to capture the ethos of the political culture at the time of the Philadelphia convention. On Sept. 17, 1787, 55 delegates to the Constitutional Convention adopted the Constitution of the United States of America. The Constitution officially took effect on March 4, 1789.
“There are several unusual elements in this composition, all of which reinforce the sense of community, as well as the idea of stepping off a ledge and diving headfirst into the unknown,” said Ewen, who composed the piece to include a set of live performers underscoring a series of dramatic readings, where music is generated and notated by a computer.
“Their uncertainties about the future of the country translate into our uncertainties about what’s going to happen next, musically,” said Ewen. “Their sense of community becomes are sense of community, their fearlessness becomes our fearlessness.”
Each year the Institute for Ethical and Civic Engagement undertakes a project to commemorate the constitution. Activities from past years include an art competition, debates, and online quizzes.
“We try to keep it lively and sponsor an activity that will capture people’s imaginations,” said Peter Simons, director of the Institute for Ethical and Civic Engagement.
Call the College of Music Concerts Box Office at 303-492-8008 for
information about this performance. For more information about the College of Music visit http://www.colorado.edu/music. Information on the Institute for Ethical and Civic Engagement is available at http://www.colorado.edu/iece.