Requiem for a Poisoned Earth

Requiem for a Poisoned Earth is an environmentally driven oratorio for orchestra and chorus, featuring four soloists and saxophone quartet. The work aims to educate audiences on the dangers of hazardous PFAS “forever chemicals.”

Developed in the early 1950s, these chemicals have been released, buried, and dumped into almost every ecosystem worldwide. PFOA, a specific industrial surfactant, was utilized in several fields/products, most notably in consumer non-stick cookware coatings (Teflon). Over 99% of all life is poisoned by PFAS. PFOA is one of over 80,000 unregulated chemicals currently in U.S. production.

The work follows characters THE HUSBAND (tenor) and THE WIFE (soprano) as they navigate the environmental injustices occurring around them. When the small-town community around them becomes concerned of the corporation’s wrongdoings, THE COMPANY (countertenor) creates THE LADY (soprano). Together they poison THE HUSBAND, and THE WIFE joins the community in a cry for justice.

The text is a combination of traditional Requiem Latin texts as well as newly commissioned English texts from lyricists Katherine E. Ragodos and Patrick Gillaspie.

World premiere March 7th, 2023 at the University of North Texas Murchison Performing Arts Center

Conductor: J. Christine Le
Featured Vocal Soloists:
Andrea Pinder – THE WIFE
Cecil Garrison – THE HUSBAND
Daniel Bubeck – THE COMPANY
Kara Libby – THE LADY
Pyxis Saxophone Quartet: – Ronald Bonitatibus, Max Windsor, Devon Isaac, Beige Cowell
Piano: Daeun Kim
Concertmaster: Joseph Reding
Chorusmaster: Kenneth Sieloff

Orchestra and Chorus featuring musicians of the UNT College of Music and the Dallas-Fort Worth area

Sponsored by the University of North Texas We Mean Green Fund in collaboration with the Advanced Environmental Research Institute