• Julius Eastman
  • Gay Guerrilla (for string septet) (1979)

  • Music Sales Corporation (World)

Commissioned by the Chicago Symphony Orchestra Association for MusicNOW; Riccardo Muti, Zell Music Director; Missy Mazzoli, Mead Composer-in-Residence

arr. Jessie Montgomery (2018)

  • 3vn.2va.vc.db
  • 30 min
    • 12th April 2023, Massey Hall, Toronto , ON, Canada
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Programme Note

Composer Note
From Julius Eastman’s remarks to the audience before the premieres of Crazy Nigger, Evil Nigger, and Gay Guerrilla in January 1980 during his composer-residency at Northwestern University:
 
“Now the reason I use Gay Guerrilla — G U E R R I L L A, that one — is because these names — let me put a little subsystem here — these names: either I glorify them or they glorify me. And in the case of guerrilla: that glorifies gay — that is to say, there aren’t many gay guerrillas. I don’t feel that ‘gaydom’ has — does have — that strength, so therefore, I use that word in the hopes that they will. You see, I feel that — at this point, I don’t feel that gay guerrillas can really match with ‘Afghani’ guerrillas or ‘PLO’ guerrillas, but let us hope in the future that they might, you see. That’s why I use that word guerrilla: it means a guerrilla is someone who is, in any case, sacrificing his life for a point of view. And, you know, if there is a cause — and if it is a great cause — those who belong to that cause will sacrifice their blood, because, without blood, there is no cause. So, therefore, that is the reason that I use gay guerrilla, in hopes that I might be one, if called upon to be one.”

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