Letter to the Editor: Spectacular event
A capacity crowd of music lovers and history buffs were present on March 26 to see and hear the world premier of Maestro Russell Wilson's production of Prelude to Glory. Although parts of the program had previously been performed, this was the first complete performance of the entire work together with a 45 member chorus. This work is without a doubt the highlight of Mr. Wilson's career as a composer, arranger, poet and author.
This entire work has been chosen to be presented in Washington D.C. on 9/11/04 and will likely be nationally recognized.
It is hard to categorize such a work combining, lyrics, music and a coral background. It was described by an enthusiastic listener as a choral spectacular, but it was indeed much more than that. It told chronologically major events and the background of the birth of our nation set to original music of Mr. Wilson and some music contemporary with that period in our national history.
No less than Beethoven used this collage of music and chorus in his greatest symphony, the ninth (Choral), and in his choral fantasy.
The 18 segments of the Prelude to Glory incorporated firsthand events such as the Boston Tea Party, the Declaration of Independence, Prayer at Valley Forge, and a Hymn of Freedom to name a few. One of the most unique and dramatic aspects of the production was the Memoriam to the Fallen: the reciting of 2500 names of the first casualties of the Revolutionary war.
It was said that over a million individual musical notes were utilized in the development synthesis of the accompanying music, many of which were integrated into the score. The end results sounded like a large orchestra in the background.
Certainly this presentation in the Price Civic Auditorium deserved the enthusiastic applause and the standing ovation by the capacity crowd that was present.
I believe this work is destined to be nationally recognized and will be a part of the musical history genre in the near future.