Lauren, of Westminster, Colorado, was diagnosed at the age of 3 with leukemia. Chase the Morning Sun was premiered for her when she was 5, and still undergoing chemotherapy. Lauren was too young to understand and yet too strong to let it get her. She’s bright, sociable, polite and an incredible reader. After the premiere performance, the band, Lauren and family enjoyed pizza together. She made it a point to go to each and every table of performers and thank them. We love you Lauren! You are the inspiration for Chase the Music!
The music of Clint Needham has been described as “wildly entertaining” and “stunning… brilliantly orchestrated” by the New York Times, as well as “well-crafted and arresting… riveting” by the Herald Times. Needham recently served as the Music Alive: New Partnerships Composer-in-Residence with the Albany Symphony where his work “Everyday Life” was premiered. Needham currently serves as Composer-in-Residence/Assistant Professor of Music at the Baldwin Wallace Conservatory of Music. He has served as an Associate Instructor at Indiana University Jacobs School of Music as well as Assistant Professor of Music at Ohio Wesleyan University. He holds degrees from Indiana University, where he was a four-year Jacobs School of Music doctoral fellow in composition, and from the Baldwin Wallace Conservatory of Music. Clint Needham is the father of twin sons. His sons were about a year old when we approached him to compose a piece for Lauren. He stated, “I just have to write this piece for her.” As a young father, he couldn’t fathom what she, and her family were going through. Clint is a dynamic young man, with a real passion for people and music.
Performers: Lyons HS Band
The Lyons High School Band, of Lyons, Colorado, under the direction of Dr. Karen Gregg performed the premiere performance of “Chase the Morning Sun”. The band had been selected by blind audition from all of the high school bands in the state of Colorado to perform at the annual convention of the Colorado Music Educators Association (CMEA). Director Dr. Karen Gregg chose this prestigious event to premiere Chase the Morning Sun for Lauren. The band was composed of 50 musicians who were 14-18 years old. Gregg said the story behind the music provides a powerful lesson for her students. “I want them to understand the whole concept of humanity and empathy and that their actions, no matter how small or big, can impact people”. Sophomore percussionist Chris “Tofu” Rives, 16, said he thinks about the emotional roller coaster Lauren and her parents have been through while playing. “Music is fueled by emotion”, he said, “and this is music at its best.”
Venue: Broadmoor Hotel, Colorado Springs, CO
Press coverage by the Longmont Times.
Contact us for information about the score.
Pictures of the rehearsal and premiere performance.
This performance was performed subsequent to the premiere, by another band. Beautiful that the music is being released, and enjoyed by others!