Domine Deus – First Movement, Parkland Choral Symphony – Steven R. Lebetkin
By Jill Fox
As the fourth anniversary of the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School tragedy draws near, one local composer is spreading his message with music.
American composer Steve Lebetkin wrote the Parkland Choral Symphony in honor of the students lost at Marjory Stoneman Douglas and those during other acts of school violence.
A musical descendant of the late Jewish composer Karol Rathaus, his works include ballet, symphonies, large orchestral pieces, and more, many of which embrace themes of social justice.
Lebetkin was moved by the tragedy and wanted to write something. He feels his three-movement choral symphony reflects the emotional pain that comes from the senseless loss of the lives of children.
The piece encompasses three emotions, he explained, beginning with the deepest pain, then anger, and ultimately a spiritual way of coping and moving forward.
“No one had ever done something like this before,” he said, “I wanted to send out a message and make my contribution.”
Lebetkin stressed that his message is not political. “This is not an anti-gun work, rather, it focuses on common ground, regardless of political persuasion,” he said.
Although the piece has yet to be performed live, the composer’s ultimate goal is to share it with the public.
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