Listening to news on his transistor radio in 1968 on a late-August day in Ithaca, NY, Czech-native Karel Husa heard devastating news: Soviet troops had invaded Czechoslovakia, crushing the political liberalizations (“The Prague Spring”) of Alexander Dubček, the new Czech leader. Since leaving Czechoslovakia shortly after World War II, Husa’s love had not diminished for his homeland even though his citizenship had been revoked. He understood the dire consequences of this new Soviet-crackdown. Husa immediately wrote his elegy for freedom — Music For Prague 1968. Since its premiere in 1969 for band, the work — reorchestrated in 1970 for premieres by the Munich Philharmonic, BBC Symphony and others — has had innumerable performances with major orchestras and bands across the globe. The potency of Music For Prague 1968 remains today; its message stands as a reminder that humanity overcomes adversity.Photo: Karel Husa on the streets of Prague. Image courtesy Cornell University.