Joseph T. Spaniola’s “PERSEVERANCE: An Isolation Chronicle” was premiered by Kennesaw State University Wind Ensemble, David Kehler, Conductor on March 2, 2022 in Kennesaw, Georgia. KSU also premiered Michael Shapiro’s “In Every One.”
Perseverance was written in response to the isolation people experienced around the world due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Here are the program notes that accompany the music.
Perseverance: An Isolation Chronicle (2021)
During the height of the pandemic, people around the world isolated themselves at home for extended periods of time. Each hour and day were difficult to distinguish from the next, each person feeling like Homer’s Sisyphus, sentenced to eternally roll a large stone up a hill only for it to roll down as it approached the top, or being tasked to find a corner in a round room. The days were as the river in Hermann Hesse’s Siddhartha, “this water ran and ran, incessantly it ran, and was always there, was always at all times the same and yet new in every moment.”
An underlying focused calm was the foundation on which survival was built. It allowed for resolutely facing the moment, courageously moving forward while standing still. Solemn thoughts of resolution invade one’s heart and mind and help fuel the passion to press on. Defiantly, the quest continues, compelled onward by a bold, unwavering, and relentless spirit. How much time has passed? Be it an hour, day, week, month, or year, it was always at all times the same and yet new in every moment and comprises this chronicle of Perseverance.
–Joseph T. Spaniola