For wind ensemble, 5 players.
In Honor of Ghost Dancers (2020) was originally entitled Wanbli Galeshka (2002) in an earlier version commissioned for Englewinds by The Puffin Foundation. It is a piece based on my deep respect for the music and prayer of the Ghost Dance “religion” of the Lakota people. To some, it is believed that the earth will someday be regenerated, bringing back the buffalo and game that used to roam freely. Songs were frequently sung to help plants, trees, and flowers prosper. Dances were done to help the earth thrive, sustain available water, and make the plants come alive again. The first movement’s theme is inspired by a Lakota chant about the morning star, which as I understand, is significant to the Ghost Dance. After a series of dances over the course of several evenings, the star and closing song mark the end of the final dance. The second movement was inspired by songs to the spotted eagle Wanbli Galeshka, who represents not only all flying creatures, but also the bird that flies the highest of all creatures, able to get closest to the Creator, Wakan Tanka. The wings symbolize the sun’s rays.
Originally commissioned for Englewinds by The Puffin Foundation.
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