Editors note: This is a perspective piece about the Rolling requiems that occured in Fort Collins on Wednesday
Through the music, you could see the towers falling.
Like a play-by-play rundown, the swaying rhythms of Mozart’s “Requiem” at the Lincoln Center Wednesday triggered year-old memories for a tearful audience.
First, the sense of panic and uncertainty of the first airplane crash; followed by uncontrollable chaos in trying to put the pieces together. As the melody continued to progress, you could feel the profound helplessness of bystanders watching the second plane circle in towards Tower One. Then, the music faded just slightly, like the calm before the storm.
Suddenly, you could remember exactly what you were doing the moment all hell broke loose and evil manifested itself on Earth. You remember the rage, the hatred, the blurry visions of death. Finally, as “Requiem” dwindles to a still hum, you remember that even one year later, a song for the dearly departed still ends with a twinge of hope.
One of many commemorative events held Wednesday in memory of Sept. 11, 2001, Rolling Requiem was part of a worldwide effort to mark the anniversary. Musicians and singers from CSU, Fort Collins, Northern Colorado and even Nebraska participated in the event, which was held in almost every time zone around the world.
Of the theater’s 1,100 seats, most were filled, many by CSU students.
“This was good,” said sophomore journalism major Aimee Hodges. “(The musicians) are a very talented group.”
Hodges and her friend Caryn Hickman, a sophomore sports medicine major, attended the event as a way to remember Sept. 11 and to receive credit for a class assignment, though both say they prayed Wednesday morning in a more personal tribute.
“I prayed for safety and comfort,” Hodges said.
Hickman said, “I felt that (Sept. 11) is the most patriotic day of the year.”
Todd Queen, CSU voice professor and opera instructor, sang tenor as one of four soloists in the performance and described the event as a collaborative effort to do the right thing.
“It wasn’t about any of us,” he said. “It was about the music and coming together for those that sacrificed their lives for us.”
The music was tied to intense emotions, and nothing could have been a better show of support for America, he said.
“We felt like we were all connected, and we were connected to the audience,” Queen said. “It was the right thing to do at the right time.”