September 16, 2012

Mankato concert to mourn Dakota War

Mankato Symphony to Play Concert to Mourn Dakota War and HangingsOn December 26, 1862, 38 Dakota men were hanged in Mankato, Minnesota, in the largest mass execution in American history. The event was a gruesome coda to the Dakota War of 1862, which had ended on September 26 with the Dakotas’ surrender at Camp Release.

On November 18, the Mankato Symphony Orchestra will play a concert to mark the 150th anniversary of the tragic war and hangings. The performance will consist of two compositions, “Trail of Tears” by Michael Daugherty and “To Be Certain of the Dawn” by Stephen Paulus.

“Trail of Tears” was inspired be the well-known forced relocation of tribes from the southeastern U.S. to what was called Indian Territory—better known today as parts of eastern Oklahoma—as decreed by the Indian Removal Act of 1830. As described in a release about the concert, Daugherty’s piece is “a musical journey into how the human spirit discovers ways to deal with upheaval, adversity and adapting to a new environment.” The performance on November 18 will mark the first time it has been played in its entirety.

Stephen Paulus’s “To Be Certain of the Dawn” is a multimedia performance consisting of music, song and photographs projected on a screen above the 80-member Mankato Symphony. The piece was commissioned by Fr. Michael O’Connell and Rabbi Joseph from the Twin Cities, and inspired by photos of children from the Holocaust.
Comment:  For more on Mankato, see Putting US-Dakota War in Context and Dakota Walk Commemorates War's Anniversary.

1 comment:

Rob said...

For more on the subject, see:

Trail of Tears and the 1862 Mankato Massacre Remembered in Tribute Performance by Mankato Symphony Orchesta

On Sunday, Nov. 18, starting at 3 p.m. at Mankato West High School Auditorium–an event will feature the acclaimed 80-member Mankato Symphony Orchestra under Kenneth Freed’s musical direction. “To Be Certain of the Dawn” will include two compositions: “Trail of Tears” by Michael Daugherty and “To Be Certain of the Dawn” by Stephen Paulus. “These two pieces of music will pay tribute to the 1862 tragedy while offering a message of optimism for the future of all Minnesotans,” says Freed in a press release from the symphony.