Performed By: Susanne Mentzer, mezzo-soprano; James Dunham, viola; and Craig Rutenberg, piano

Movements:
I. ...Jeff Hardy... II. To the Towers Themselves III. Don't Look for Me Anymore IV. Untitled V. Someone Passes

Instrumentation:
Mezzo-soprano, viola, and piano

Text: Anon., Alicia Vasquez, Martha Cooper, and Ted Berrigan. Texts selected by Susanne Mentzer

Duration: 18 minutes

Premiere:
July 20, 2005 by Susanne Mentzer, mezzo-soprano; James Dunham, viola; and Craig Rutenberg, piano; at Harris Hall, Aspen Music Festival, Aspen, CO

Available From:
Libby Larsen Publishing

Composer's Notes:

Sifting Through the Ruins is a set of five songs composed in memory of the human lives changed forever by the bombing of the World Trade Center in September 2001. Susanne Mentzer, James Dunham, Craig Rutenberg, and I give these songs to you with a wish to honor the profound love of life, so gentle, but at present ferociously and blindingly evident in every second of our lives.

Susanne privately collected a number of texts which she discovered on her personal journey towards understanding the events of September 11th. We chose the words we present today as a way of bringing out essential emotions. The truths are stark. The words are startling simple, innocent, direct, and bereft of contrivance. In short, they are authentic. They are the only logical response of human beings to the utter shock of sudden death. That there are words at all astounds me. These are the hardest words with which I have ever partnered as a composer. But we four artists trust that our work together can in some small way articulate their weight by letting the words speak for themselves, born up by the music we make.

A recording is available for purchase with the album, Circle of Friends, or seperately:


 
Score Errata:
mvt.IV: m.38- 2nd half of beat 4 should be B natural.