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Upcoming digital release seeks to bring solace to those impacted by local tragedy

This coming June, in conjunction with National Gun Violence Awareness Day, Cedille Records will present a special digital release of an especially meaningful new composition. Composed by Stacy Garrop for the Lincoln Trio, Repair the World memorializes the mass shooting at the 2022 Independence Day parade in Highland Park, Illinois, a small community just north of Chicago. Seven people were killed and 48 were physically injured that day. Countless others continue to deal with the trauma they experienced.

Garrop approached writing this piece with great sensitivity to a community still grappling with tragedy. Joanne Bernstein, a longtime Highland Park resident and commissioner of this project, arranged for Stacy to talk with a wide range of people about the event, from city organizers and first responders to witnesses and survivors. They also visited the temporary and current memorial sites and a nearby Kindness Rock Garden where people placed painted rocks with messages. In naming the work Repair the World, Garrop calls upon the Jewish concept of tikkun olam (the Hebrew words inscribed on a tag at one of the memorials), that we need to fix what is broken. This idea plays out musically in the piece, with melodies and chords first moving one way, then “fixing” themselves by reversing, as though getting repaired.

Of her musical response to the tragedy, Stacy Garrop writes:

The piece was premiered on July 2, 2023 by The Lincoln Trio at a concert commemorating the one-year anniversary of the tragedy. Garrop has since rearranged it for many different instrumentations, including solo arrangements for a variety of instruments, other chamber configurations, and string orchestra. In Garrop’s words: “it is quickly morphing into a work that can be played whenever people feel a more general message of cultivating a better world is needed.”

We hope Repair the World will honor and bring solace and hope to the people of Highland Park and all those who have been affected by gun violence, other tragedies, or just wish for a better world. Music has the power to transcend boundaries, bringing together communities in a harmonious symphony of shared emotions. A portion of revenues from this special release will be donated toward gun violence prevention. You’ll be able to download or access this recording on your preferred streaming platform starting on June 7.


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