Considering Matthew Shepard

Join Us For Our 11th Season this Fall

Sunday, November 10, 2019 at 2 pm

Samuelson Chapel

Considering Matthew Shepard


Areté returns to the stage for its 11th season, which promises to be the most interesting and eclectic yet. The innovative professional ensemble of vocal artists performs Considering Matthew Shepard by Craig Hella-Johnson.

In October of 1998, Matthew Shepard, a young, gay student at the University of Wyoming in Laramie was kidnapped, severely beaten, tied to a fence and left to die in a lonely field under a blanket of stars. Five days later, when Matt passed away, the world was watching. Now 20 years later, Craig Hella Johnson has responded with his first concert-length work, Considering Matthew Shepard. This three-part fusion oratorio speaks with a fresh and bold voice, incorporating a variety of musical styles seamlessly woven into a unified whole. Johnson sets a wide range of poetic and soulful texts as well as passages from Matt’s personal journal, interviews and writings from his parents. The Washington Post wrote, “Considering Matthew Shepard demonstrates music’s capacity to encompass, transform and transcend tragedy. Powerfully cathartic, it leads us from horror and grief to a higher understanding of the human condition, enabling us to endure.”

With uncompromising attention to musical detail and a passion for live performance, Areté provides a joyful, moving, educational and soul. Tickets are $20 at the door or $15 if purchased online in advance. Students with ID are $10 and children under 12 are free.

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