Reading the news this AM was sobering and affecting. Scenes of brutality unfolding in Egypt’s struggle for democracy, and concurrent acts of bravery from protestors struggling for basic human rights, are replacing those of peaceful protest. It appears that the struggle for change in Egypt will be harder than many around the world had hoped. I’m reminded me of how fortunate I am to live in a country where I can speak freely, assemble peacefully, and have the right to vote. No matter how the crisis in Egypt ultimately is resolved, I earnestly wish that the same opportunities will be afforded to the Egyptian people.
In light of the recent events in the Middle East, my thoughts turned to politically engaged music. I couldn’t help but hear Frederic Rzewski’s imposing series of variations on The People Who are United Will Never Be Defeated, a Chilean song, as a piece that remains equally relevant today.
Here is an excerpt of the work, performed by the composer in 2007.