Mass for the Unarmed Child – JOIN the Commissioning Consortium

I want to share with you an update on the “Mass for the Unarmed Child Commissioning Consortium”.

I am so excited about how this consortium is shaping up, from my collaborators (Shantel and Adrian) as well as the choirs that have joined (and the choirs that are considering it!)

The mass shooting at Stoneman Douglas this past February was another senseless act of violence in a long and tragic trail of violence toward children. Like many, it left me feeling helpless, yet again. Feelings returned at a strength I had not felt since the murders at Sandy Hook.

Mass for the Unarmed Child is my response to this violence that pervades our society today. Although this mass focuses on gun violence, it is not only gun violence that threatens our youth. Our children face violence through the opioid crisis, verbal abuse, an increase in suicides (especially in the LGBT community), climate change, and, especially as fresh water supply diminishes, war on the global stage.

Your Choir & the Mass for the Unarmed Child Commissioning Consortium

Mass for the Unarmed Child will consist of 10 movements in total. Each movement in the Mass for the Unarmed Child will be commissioned by a choir.

The Movements of Mass for the Unarmed Child – Preliminary Plan

I. 1st movement: Title to be Determined

II. Kyrie

III. 3rd mvmt. Hip hopera – tribute to inner city youth; the rhythm of chaos

IV. Sanctus

V. Bird on a Wire
Commissioned by the Eugene Concert Choir, Dr. Diane Retallak, Artistic Director

VI. To Avielle, On Her 5th Sixth Birthday
Commissioned by the Mount Sinai Choral Consortium, Mr. Eric Blatt, Conductor

VII. Agnus Dei

VIII. Eight Inches

IX. Benedictus

X. 10th movement – From Darkness to Light (Title to be Determined)

A Cappella Options:
Although the Mass for the Unarmed Child will be written for chorus and small symphonic orchestra, there may be one unaccompanied movement.

The following movement has the option of being commissioned by a youth or adult treble choir.

II. Kyrie (for treble voices)

A Response to Gun Violence

Why Mass for the Unarmed Child?

The mass shooting at Stoneman Douglas this past February was another senseless act of violence in a long and tragic trail of violence toward children. Like many, it left me feeling helpless, yet again. Feelings returned at a strength I had not felt since the murders at Sandy Hook.

Mass for the Unarmed Child is my response to this violence that pervades our society today. Although this mass focuses on gun violence, it is not only gun violence that threatens our youth. Our children face violence through the opioid crisis, verbal abuse, an increase in suicides (especially in the LGBT community), climate change, and, especially as fresh water supply diminishes, the war on the global stage.

The Washington Choral Group & the Mass for the Unarmed Child Commissioning Consortium

Mass for the Unarmed Child will consist of 10 movements in total. Each movement in the Mass for the Unarmed Child will be commissioned by a choir.

Other States Reviewing or Finalizing Contracts: PA, OH, CA, NJ, IL,
Additional States with Messages of Invitation: MA, VT, WA, CT

1) COMMISSION AND SCOPE OF AGREEMENT.

PIECE
a. Commissioner commissions Composer Michael Bussewitz-Quarm to write a movement for YOUR CHOIR, lasting approximately four to six (4-6) minutes.

b. Orchestration to consist of a small symphonic orchestra (3-3-2-2-1) plus piano.

c. Text for Piece will be chosen by Michael Bussewitz-Quarm based on suggestions and ideas from Commissioner. All texts used in Piece are subject to approval by Commissioner. Permission to use any copyrighted texts in Piece will be obtained by Composer. (In the case of the treble voices movement, Kyrie is the preferred text)

d. The Commissioner will receive exclusive State Premiere rights for the Piece through June 2020, both the song (movement) they commission as well as the entire Mass for the Unarmed Child.

2) DELIVERY AND DEADLINES.

Full proposal including texts, proposed instrumentation, and choral distribution: not later than
1/1/19

Score Draft for review to Choral Director: not later than 3/1/19

Completed Choral/Piano Score: not later than 6/15/19 (the Commissioner will duplicate)

Completed Orchestral score and parts: not later than 9/15/19

Format of completed score: Clearly legible choral score executed in Finale file (if requested) and PDF file in addition to one printed original for each part and full score. All of these said scores, parts and copies will be the property of Commissioner. The Commissioner agrees not to distribute the piece to any other persons or organizations without the permission of the Composer.

3) DATE OF PREMIERE.

Premiere of Piece by Commissioner shall be on a date determined by the Commissioner, and occurring from September 2019 through June 2020.

4) OTHER DUTIES OF THE COMPOSERS:

Rehearsals and Concert Attendance: The Composer to negotiate participation in any rehearsals and concerts either in person or though Skype as availability permits.

5) COMPENSATION

(If choosing to commission any of movements 1, 2, 4, 7-9) $2,000
(If choosing to commission movement 3) $3,000
(If choosing to commission movement 10) $4,000

Michael Bussewitz-Quarm | Composer

Passionate about advocacy through choral music, Michael Bussewitz-Quarm is an award-winning New York-based composer, conductor, and speaker. His choral work, “I’ll Fly Away”, received its Canadian premiere upon selection to the International Society of Contemporary Music’s World
Music Days 2017 in Vancouver, B.C., and performance by the acclaimed vocal group, musica intima. Michael’s most recent works include the commissioned work “The Road That Has No End”“Nigra Sum”, and Requiem Dies Magna, which premiered September 2017 by Long Island Voices and Sound Symphony under Michael’s direction. Michael recently organized the Child Refugee Awareness and Hope for Recovery Choral Consortium Projects, and “The Great American Choral Reef”, to be premiered on Earth Day, 2019. Through the message of each consortium, Michael hopes to bring attention to the children of the global refugee crisis, families struggling with opioid addiction, as well as the urgency to respond to climate change.

Michael has been commissioned by the Women’s Voices Chorus of Chapel Hill, North Carolina for 2019 to write “A Mother’s Hands”, featuring both an adult and a youth choir.

Michael’s works have been broadcast on Public Radio East, KMUZ, and public radio in Chapel Hill, North Carolina.

Two of his choral works, “I’ll Fly Away” and “Nigra Sum” will be published by Peermusic Classical beginning in 2019.

Michael can be reached through his website, www.MBQStudio.com

Collaborating Partners

Lyricist (multiple movements)

Shantel Sellers is a historian and writer whose work has appeared in numerous national publications. A native of Michigan, she now resides on Long Island with her husband and family.

As a Native American (Anishinaabe-kwe), Shantel endeavors to give voice to those whose history might otherwise be forgotten. Her work has appeared in Renaissance and History magazines, among other national publications. She recently completed her first novel.

Composer (3rd movement)

Adrian Dunn, is an accomplished singer, composer, and producer. He is the founder and CEO of HoperaWorld Entertainment. He has sung in the CCM Spoleto Opera Festival in Spoleto Italy and was nominated for “Best Music Director” from the Black Theater Alliance Awards for his work with HOPERA- A hip-hop opera in 2010. He opened for international hip hop recording artists The Roots at Indiana University Auditorium in 2005 and was a featured solo artist on the Higher Ground Live DVD recording in Finland (2007). He has prepared and provided background vocals for numerous pop, r&b and gospel artists in the United States and abroad, including Tony Momrelle (UK band Incognito), Rena Darling (EU), Max C (EU) and others. He has also sung with the Chicago Symphony Chorus, Grant Park Symphony Chorus, and appeared as a vocalist with the Rob Parton Jazz Orchestra.

Workshopping for The Avielle Foundation of Sandy Hook

In September of 2019, I will lead a volunteer choir and orchestra on Long Island in a concert performance of Mass for the Unarmed Child to benefit The Avielle Foundation. The Mission of the Avielle Foundation is to prevent violence and build compassion through neuroscience research, community engagement, and education. All proceeds from this performance will go to The Avielle Foundation.

Bird on a Wire

Shantel Sellers © 2018

In winter the stars fell like snow,
Scattered and broken
With nowhere to go,
And I held your breath while you slept,
Dreaming the way sparrows dream
When the spring tides are rising
And even the old stones wear green.

There’s a bird on a wire
Watching over an empty nest,
And it’s me hanging there
Still waiting for something, I guess.
I’m watching through windows
Days I thought that I’d never see,
Then the wild wind rises
And I feel you here next to me.

That winter soon passed
Like all of the seasons before.
Time shrugged off its coat
And left muddy boots at the door.
I walked in green fields,
Swept up in violet reverie,
But the moment was frozen
Because winter never left me.

I can’t unbreak the stars
Or paint them back into the sky.
I can’t turn back the arrow
Or even figure out why.
The days come and go
And all of the seasons will change,
But this season is yours
And it’s here that I’ll write your name.

For Inquiries, You Can Email Me Here!

By |2018-10-14T02:02:21+00:00October 9th, 2018|Community, Latest News, Listen Afresh Blog|0 Comments

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