Concert Program including song lyrics
Buffalo Nation (Bison bison) is a piece of theatrical music created by composer & Milwaukee native, Jerome Kitzke and librettist, Kathleen Masterson. Through music and text the work will illuminate the huge, varied, and largely unsung story of the American Bison from pre-history to present time, including the herd’s late 19th century decimation. This story, which is simultaneously tragic and redemptive, ecological and social,was inspired fromhistorical records, contemporary ecological writings, contemporary fiction, aural histories of the Great Plains Indian Nations, and from imagination.
A solo singer, actors, sound effects chorus, and instrumentalists will bring their voices to bear in representing not only the human characters, but the bison as well. According to Kitzke and Masterson, “As American creative artists, we have always been acutely aware of the non-static quality of history, and that the way we now live on this land is directly connected to the way we historically came to live on it. This piece will reflect that belief, and though the story it tells is an emotionally difficult one, it will, we believe, be one of redemption as well.”
Performed by Present Music, PIUS XI High School Choir, Norman Moses, Joel Kopischke, Alison Mary Forbes, Lisa Golda, and Kurt Ollmann.