Conspirare: Considering Matthew Shepard

Conspirare: Considering Matthew Shepard

February 28, 2018 - 7:30pm
Mannoni Performing Arts Center Auditorium
$15 adult; $10 student (with ID) reserved seating
Southern Miss Ticket Office 800.844.8425, 601.266.5418

Conspirare’s current touring project, Considering Matthew Shepard, is a Grammy-nominated three-part oratorio composed by Craig Hella Johnson. The work, which debuted at number four on Billboard’s Traditional Classical Chart, is an evocative and compassionate musical response to the murder of Matthew Shepard. Matthew Shepard was a young, gay college student at the University of Wyoming who in October 1998 was kidnapped, severely beaten, tied to a fence and left to die in a lonely field under a blanket of stars. When Shepard passed away, five days later, an offended world looked on composer Craig Hella Johnson had a profoundly personal reaction to both the murder and its resonance.

Considering Matthew Shepard transports listeners through a tapestry of musical textures and idioms in a poignant concert experience inspiring hope, compassion, and empowerment. The Washington Post called the work “powerfully cathartic,” and wrote “Like Bach’s large-scale choral works, this spellbinding piece draws on many styles masterfully juxtaposed, though Johnson’s sources are the American vernacular. A Prologue, Passion and Epilogue … combine spoken text, cowboy song, American hymnody and popular song, spirituals, jazz and dazzling polyphony, all woven into a seamless tapestry. The impact is immediate, profound and, at times, overwhelming.”

After moving performances in College Station and a standing ovation in Boston’s Symphony Hall, Considering Matthew Shepard returns to the national stage in February 2018 with performances in Dallas, Lincoln, NE, Oxford, MS and Hattiesburg, MS.

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Add to Calendar: Considering Matthew Shepard 02/28/2018 07:30 PM 02/28/2018 10:00 PM America/Chicago Conspirare: Considering Matthew Shepard Mannoni Performing Arts Center, Southern Miss Hattiesburg Campus