7-8 May 2021
My Mom’s B birthday
The Birthdays of Peter Ilyich Tchaikowsky and Johannes Brahms
The End of WWII in Europe
Below is an article celebrating The Brotherhood of Man, entitled, “Remember the Future for Truth is Timeless . . .”
written in late 2004 by Mr. Don Jemella, a Band Director of some 40+ years.
“This article is beyond words....how can this be made into a press release, submitted as an article in the Instrumentalist, and announced throughout the entire profession? This is a must. What a phenomenal contribution to history and our world!!” Ed Lisk
“Remember the Future for Truth is Timeless . . .” Stephen Melillo 2004
Article by Don Jemella
Think History is about the past? Think Again! When an event of such historic proportions calls to us from the horizon rather than the past, only unseen forces could be at work to make it happen. The musical event-horizon that combines History, Heroism and Honor with Truth in truly majestic ways guarantees that you’ll NEED - not want - to bear witness.
Beyond what will be a musically ground-breaking 2 CD set, May of 2005 will witness the STORMWORKS legacy become a part of not just musical, but Human History.
The story takes us - this time - to Japan where renowned composer Stephen Melillo shapes the convergence of the Past and Future to confront Truth.
STORMDate: 3-4 April 2004 - Roswell, New Mexico. The premier renderings of Mr. Melillo’s Beyond Courage: Then, Now and Always: A Documentary in Music, written to honor the Heroic Souls of the Bataan Death March. This title was eventually changed in Japan to “Kakehashi: That We Might Live.”
Read on . . .
With an acute interest in World War II, Mr. Melillo was intrigued by an “opportunity” listed in Men’s Health Magazine to participate in the annual Bataan Death March re-enactment in New Mexico. Participate he did in what turned out to be the 60th Anniversary of the actual march. After meeting and speaking with many of the Survivors of Bataan and Corregidor, and reading Beyond Courage by Dorothy Cave, setting this amazing story to music was beyond circumstance, or time, or question.
After meeting with Survivors and getting to know them and their stories over a period of 10 days, it was clear that the 6-10 minute work commissioned by The NOTE Council, REACH 2000, Continental Harmony and The American Composer’s Forum needed far greater scale to honor these Men. The final composition of some 65 minutes, is scored for large-scale wind ensemble, 300 voice chorus, soloists and a scholarly compilation of actual World War II audio.
The final composition of some 65 minutes, is scored for large-scale wind ensemble, 300 voice chorus, soloists and a scholarly compilation of actual World War II audio.
This work is about history and feeling, a “Life March” borne of the stories suffered by the brave Souls of Bataan and Corregidor. It is an historically accurate, politically incorrect Journey into America...and Japan...of the 1940s. Using actual audio clips including Franklin Delano Roosevelt speeches, Tokyo Rose broadcasts, actual Morse code transmissions and songs played on American Radios after the attack on Pearl Harbor, Kakehashi: That We Might Live replays the History of War in the Pacific, the Bataan Death March, the three and one-half years of imprisonment, the struggle for Survival... the Discovery of a Light beyond courage, and finally the uplifting of the Human Spirit in the Eternal cause of Freedom and the Brotherhood of Man.
…and finally the uplifting of the Human Spirit in the Eternal cause of Freedom and the Brotherhood of Man.
At the Roswell, New Mexico premiere, when the white flag was lowered and the 48-star U.S. banner was raised some 55-minutes into the musical journey, unbridled ovation took the piece to its apparent conclusion... and beyond. Then, a small child came forth. God Bless America, the likes of which we’ve never heard before brings the audience to still, yet another level of emotion, gratitude and ovation. So stunned, so changed was the audience, that 7 minutes of reverent silence followed the applause before musicians were asked to leave the stage.
Said Joseph R. Priestley, LCDR, USN (ret. Veteran of 3 wars): “No one could have written this better. Your work has filled my old heart to bursting, and brought tears to my old eyes. Your work is the greatest patriotic tribute to these heroes which could ever have been rendered. God Bless you!”
Harold Hise, Bataan Survivor: “We don’t have to be ashamed any more because we were forced to surrender.”
Jack Aldrich, Bataan Survivor: “The Spirit of the music swells up inside you. I remembered things I thought I had forgotten, and were very important to me.”
But what of the Future?
The Musical Program notes ask: What is Beyond Courage? Who were... who are ...these Men? They suffered the unimaginable and were reduced to the most base form of “animal”. Horribly, there was enough Humanity left within to recognize this most lowered form of self. They hated themselves. After years of imprisonment and punishment, they were freed by their comrades who wore uniforms they did not recognize. Food was dropped from the skies to starving men. In unthinkable irony, some were actually killed by the canisters. And what did some of these starved, battered Men do?
They gave their food to starving Japanese children.
This is the best of America... the best of Men. Somewhere Beyond Courage... is the Brotherhood of Man, and these Men, even in their greatest pain and despair... knew that.
Somewhere Beyond Courage... is the Brotherhood of Man, and these Men, even in their greatest pain and despair... knew that.
With Fate at work, and right before composing Kakehashi: That We Might Live, Stephen Melillo composed MUSASHI, the story of a Japanese hero... the ultimate Samurai, who at the end of his life gives up his sword for poetry, art and Love. Met with such powerful response, Japanese musicians and audiences sought a new work to render and record. Mr. Melillo approached his Japanese colleagues with the …then titled, Beyond Courage.
The proposal was met with unexpected fervor, and ultimately the Commander of the Japanese Air Self-Defense Force Band (JASDF) and Colonel Junichiro Eguchi of the Japanese Ministry of Defense, indicated their desire to make such a recording.
But a work of such historic...and political importance required deeper study and investigation by officials of the Japanese Government. In mutual agreement and persevering collaboration, an even more global version of the work was agreed to. The new work, “Kakehashi: That We Might Live” bravely portrays and retells the story of War in the Pacific some 60 years ago... from both perspectives, and then creates a Bridge of friendship centering on the simple idea of "Home".
Of significance, this 2-CD album will be the first released outside of Japan. That the event takes place in the 60th Anniversary year of the end of World War II is also noteworthy.
The official “GO” set in motion plans for an international recording of this epic work. Along with the JASDF, the Choruses of Shenandoah University and Old Dominion University will travel to Japan to record the vocal portions of Kakehashi: That We Might Live. Lex Van Deipen of the Netherlands will record the 2-CD Set. Virtuoso Japanese Violinist, Reiko Suzuki will join forces with ancient instruments to render the Concerto for Violin, Shoichiro Hokazono lends his world-known Euphonium playing on the piece Cuba, and a young Japanese/Australian singer, by the name of Tia Stanhope will render God Bless America… and a new addition, composed for the Japanese people, Furusato.
The STORMWORKS Chapters 5:8 Album aptly entitled WRITINGS ON THE WALL, will be released in 2005-06 and include The Concerto For Violin and Orchestra, Cuba, JIDAI, Musashi, Furusato and Kakehashi: That We Might Live.
One can only imagine the Courage it took to bring this barrier-breaking moment to all people... and at this time. In this moment which we now share together, Japan and its officials joined with its Musicians are demonstrating that the Brotherhood of Man is far beyond a phrase. The Japanese are living the very Music they will render, and in so doing, are becoming the role models for a new generation of Heroes.
STORMWORKS Chapters 5:8-Writings on the Wall is a truly heroic event bringing a new standard of Forgiveness, Love and Understanding, transcending all barriers and a reminder to Remember the Future for Truth is Timeless.
For the much, much more please visit Chapters 5:8 at Stormworld.com.