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A Movement for Rosa
A Movement for Rosa In 1955, tailor's assistant Rosa Parks (1913-2005) refused to relinquish her seat on a city bus in Montgomery, Alabama to a white man. Her peaceful and courageous act of defiance and subsequent arrest sparked the U.S. Civil Rights Movement.
This tone-poem contains three contrasting sections. The first evokes Rosa’s early years in Alabama through her marriage at age 19. The second section portrays years of racial strife and the quest for social equality. The last section is one of quiet strength and serenity. The hymn “We Shall Overcome”, foreshadowed in fragments in the first two sections, is finally heard in its entirety on solo horn. The lack of resolution in the work’s final measures serves as an ominous reminder of racism’s lingering presence.
Mark Camphouse (b. 1954) is an accomplished composer, conductor and trumpet player. Born in Oak Park, Illinois, he received his formal musical training at Northwestern University and is Professor of Music and Director of Bands at Radford University in Virginia. He believes that composers and musicians should be politically aware and involved. He has composed works honoring Helen Keller and Ronald Reagan as well as Rosa Parks. "On my tombstone," he says, "I want to be remembered for two of the most meaningful words to me: American first and musician second." This piece is written in memory of his mother.
Last updated on April 3, 2012 by Palatine Concert Band