Friday night in Saint Mary’s Little Theatre, music brought to life the tragedy of the Civil War. Performed by a guest soprano, a string trio, pianist and the Women’s Choir, William Averitt’s work, “From These Honored Dead,” musically tied together Civil War hymns, quotes and poems.According to the performance program, the piece was commissioned in commemoration of the 150th anniversary of the end of the Civil War.Throughout the week, Averitt worked with the musicians and the Women’s Choir in preparation for the performance, director of the Women’s Choir Dr. Nancy Menk said.“It’s an appropriate piece for this day [9/11] in history, but was actually written to commemorate the end of the Civil War,” Menk said. “It is moving and heart-wrenching at the same time.”Before the performance began, Averitt spoke to the audience about the structure and arrangement of the piece. The work is divided into three sections each dealing with a theme of the Civil War, and each section has four movements with a similar layout of quote, poem, hymn and instrumental movement, he said.“You probably think of the Civil War perhaps first as the tragic loss of hundreds, thousands, of men,” Averitt said. “But when we think of war, we don’t necessarily think of the women. Me, being a sort of contrarian, I begin each of the three sections with a quote by a woman of commemorable endurance during the civil war era.”The quoted women include the abolitionist Harriet Tubman, Red Cross founder Clara Barton and abolitionist Harriet Beecher Stowe. During the performance, solo soprano Laurel Thomas sang each quote, accompanied only by piano.Averitt said, “The first movement deals with leading up to the war. Beginning with the Clara Barton [second] section, we deal with the tragedy, wounded and death itself that came so frequently. … The third section deals with the aftermath and focuses really on the Dirge [for Two Veterans] by Walt Whitman.”Each section has a poem, with the first being Herman Melville’s “The Portent,” followed by Melville’s “Shiloh-A Requiem” and finally Whitman’s “Dirge for Two Veterans.” The poems are meant to be the centerpiece of each section, Averitt said.The piece ended with all the musicians together performing Isaac Watts’ hymn, “O, Were I Like a Feathered Dove.”“I don’t know if ‘enjoy’ is the right word, but I hope you find things that move you,” Averitt said.Before the start of “From These Honored Dead,” flutist Frances Lapp Averitt and pianist David Eicher performed Averitt’s piece “Darkling Light.” Averitt said the piece was written right before the composition of “From These Honored Dead.”Saint Mary’s junior Gabrielle Jansen said she found the arrangement of the main piece to be unique and touching at the same time.“It was a great performance,” Jansen said. “It definitely moved me. In a way, you felt more of the emotion behind the war and all the sad things … which brought back thoughts that can be applied to this historical modern day.”Tags: civil war, saint mary’s, Saint Mary’s Music Department, Women’s Choir
Tags: footballSolvay Two vastly different takeaways could be made from the Solvay footbal team’s 48-15 loss to Section IV’s Chenango Forks in Saturday’s Class B regional final at Vestal High School.On one hand, the Bearcats met with disappointment against the state no. 1-ranked Blue Devils, unable to overcome a first half where Forks put up 34 unanswered points.But the other conclusion was far more persuasive, that no result in the state playoffs would alter what Solvay accomplished to get this far, claiming 10 consecutive victories and breaking a 17-year Section III championship drought. Though it had mostly relied on its running attack, the Blue Devils struck again from the air when Ray Austin threw to Matt Paske on a 28-yard scoring pass, but still Forks wasn’t done in the half.When defensive end Matt Paske intercepted a Brock Bagozzi pass at the Blue Devils’ 25 and returned it 65 yards deep into Solvay territory, it set up Scott’s six-yard scoring run 53 seconds before intermission.All told, Bagozzi threw three interceptions, including a third-quarter pick by Victor Arciolla that the Blue Devils turned into more points when Dubbs Haqq went six yards for the TD.Only in the final period did Bagozzi, who threw for 276 yards, get the Bearcats on the board, connecting with Justin Scott twice on long scoring passes of 60 and 51 yards, but Forks had long secured another trip to the state semifinals, where it will face Buffalo’s Maritime Charter Health Services.Solvay, meanwhile, will see a special senior class that includes Bagozzi, Jaimen Bliss, Elijah Wright, Blaine Franklin, Brendon Carolina, Tyriq Block, Brad Lando, Prince Smith, Xzavier Morris and Ethan Bigelow depart, their legacy a revival of a proud program and a long-awaited sectional title. Share this:FacebookTwitterLinkedInRedditComment on this Story So much of the challenge that Solvay faced against Forks had little to do with the Bearcats’ own immense quality. This was a Blue Devils side that still remembered how it lost in this same regional round to Skaneateles one year earlier, and badly wanted redemption.In all phases of the game, Forks controlled matters, using its ground attack to move to Solvay’s three-yard line late in the first quarter before Lucas Scott found the end zone.Another drive soon followed, which Scott finished off by scoring on a two-yard plunge in the opening minute of the second period. Barely three minutes later, the margin grew to 20-0 thanks to another Forks drive and a third Scott TD from two yards out.