We Lived Happily During the War (2021)

Soprano and Six Percussionists


Commissioned by the Fromm Foundation, written for Jamie Jordan and Talujon Percussion


We Lived Happily During the War (2021) (20’) is scored for soprano and six percussionists and is based on a poem by Ilya Kaminsky. This piece was made possible by a grant from the Fromm Music Foundation and written for soprano Jamie Jordan and Talujon. The piece is comprised of four songs and a percussion interlude all of which reflect the isolation, pain, and political call to action – and the resulting inaction – that the 2020 pandemic has come to represent. It is also a further contemplation about my family history, especially my grandmother’s escape from Ukraine with her seven children after the massacre in her town during the 1919 pandemic (my grandmother’s pre-recorded singing voice is featured in movement II). The piece takes on a devastating new meaning in light of the 2022 Russian invasion of Ukraine. We Lived Happily During the War is dedicated to my dear friend and colleague, Eric Moe. – MR

Plurabelle Music Publishing

Ilya Kaminsky, Emily Dickinson, Yiddish Folk Song, and others

World Premiere
September 30, 2022, DiMenna Center, New York City

We Lived Happily During the War

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