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85th Anniversary Kick Off: Celebration of Music with NACAP (Purchase Tickets)
05/27/2022 @ 5:30 pm - 7:30 pm$10
Nuclear Crystal by Xavier Ben (Navajo)
Image credit: Grand Canyon Music Festival
Michael Begay (left) and the Catalyst Quartet work with NACAP apprentice composer
The Wheelwright Museum kicks off its 85th anniversary year with the Native American Composer Apprentice Project (NACAP) Celebration of Music in partnership with the Grand Canyon Music Festival. This public event will take place on May 27, 2022, from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. on the grounds of the Wheelwright, featuring the Strata Quartet, and renowned composer in residence Raven Chacon (Navajo) and NACAP alum and teaching composer Michael Begay (Navajo).
The Strata Quartet will perform the original compositions by Native youth apprentice composers Elijah Ben (Navajo), Xavier Ben (Navajo), Cina Curley (Navajo), Russell Goodluck (Navajo), Nataani Hanley (Navajo/Húŋkpapȟa Lakota), Arika Morningstar (Hopi), and Christina Shupla (Hopi). Each composer will share their story and inspiration behind their composition.
The event is generously supported by the Santa Fe Community Foundation’s Native American Advised Fund. General admission seating is $10.00 (First-come, first-serve).
Raven Chacon (Navajo), the first Native American to win the Pulitzer Prize for music.
Voiceless Mass is a large ensemble work commissioned by WI Conference of the United Church of Christ, Plymouth Church UCC, and Present Music and composed specifically for the Nichols & Simpson organ at The Cathedral of St. John the Evangelist in Milwaukee, Wisconsin but can be performed in any space of worship with high ceilings and pipe organ.
The composition was a site-specific commission to utilize the organ for Present Music’s annual Thanksgiving concert. As an Indigenous artist, I make a point not to present my work on this holiday, but in this case I made an exception.
This work considers the spaces in which we gather, the history of access of these spaces, and the land upon which these buildings sit. Though ‘mass’ is referenced in the title, the piece contains no audible singing voices, instead using the openness of the large space to intone the constricted intervals of the wind and string instruments. In exploiting the architecture of the cathedral, Voiceless Mass considers the futility of giving voice to the voiceless, when ceding space is never an option for those in power.