We Gathered At The River —2005

Cellist Michelle Djokic and pianist Gail Niwa performed the premiere of We Gathered at the River in memory of our friend Marty Luther on a Concordia Chamber Players concert in New Hope, Pennsylvania.

Program Notes

When I moved to Lambertville, New Jersey in the summer of 2004, Marty Luther, a local resident, business owner and music lover, generously asked to hear my music, which he graciously passed along to his friend, the cellist Michelle Djokic. I think he had it in mind that some day I should write a piece for her and the Concordia Chamber players in New Hope, PA. It is sad and strange that such an occasion should have arisen under these circumstances—Marty died suddenly and unexpectedly in February of 2005. I’m not sure Marty knew how much I appreciated his support of my music in the brief time we knew each other. To honor him, I composed “We Gathered At The River (remembering Marty)” for Michelle and Gail to perform on his memorial concert in April of 2005. Based entirely on the hymn tune, “At the River,” the music does not attempt to represent Marty; rather it is intended as a reflection on Marty’s memorial service at Lambertville Station. On that day, we gathered together in a spacious room just above the river, family and friends, old and new, to remember Marty in word and deed. In order to evoke his continued presence in our hearts and minds, I have opened the composition with a small collage that incorporates an interview I recorded with Marty in his store in September 2004.