Mission Statement of the M17 Oratorio Project

The MH17 Oratorio Project s​upports the premiere performance of composer Richard Einhorn’s ode for all the victims of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, especially those who perished in the skies over Eastern Ukraine on Flight MH17. Proceeds from the premiere and subsequent performances will be donated to help Ukrainian children orphaned by the current war, the country’s most vulnerable innocents, in memory of the children who died on MH17.

It is hoped that the world premiere of this work, generously commissioned by Kay Bossone, will take place in late 2015 or early 2016 at Carnegie Hall. It will be scored for full orchestra, choruses, and soloists. The Philadelphia Orchestra and the Mendelssohn Club (a chorus which has sung with the Orchestra for several decades), have expressed interest in performing the piece.

Richard Einhorn is renowned for composing the oratorio V​oices of Light​to accompany Carl Theodor Dreyer's great 1928 silent film, T​he Passion of Joan of Arc.​After coming across this masterpiece in 1988, he was inspired to write his piece which has been subsequently performed in conjunction with screenings of the film world wide. The oratorio is extraordinary, and was received with critical acclaim. He has the perfect sensibility and of course skill to execute a very appropriate, moving tribute to commemorate the souls lost in this tragic, ongoing war, especially the 298 passengers from many nations massacred when Flight MH17 was shot down.

By memorializing their deaths in particular, his work will serve to remind us that the larger context of the crash of MH17 is an historic, centuries old conflict between Russia and Ukraine over Ukraine's desire for sovereignty. It is the universal, eternal struggle against oppression which at this particular moment in history we are seeing played out so intensely in Ukraine.

Please click this link to read the article written by committee member David Drake about Richard Einhorn's oratorio for the victims of M 17 and the conflict in Eastern Ukraine. This piece was published in Huffington Post.

Many thanks to David for his work and for making this opportunity possible.