The first thought on Ann Binder’s mind upon waking up Wednesday morning was also her last before going to bed: Sept. 11 had finally come.
A 1999 CSU graduate currently living in New York City, Binder sang in two memorial services in the city Wednesday, including a presentation of Mozart’s Rolling Requiem.
The event combined musicians and singers in an hour-long performance of Mozart’s “Requiem,” played in almost every time zone in the world Wednesday.
At 8:46 a.m. on an unusually quite day in the Big Apple, Binder and other performers settled down outside the American Bible Society to play and sing the traditional funeral song as passersby gathered in the street to listen, she said.
“People would be walking by on the way to work and be drawn into the music,” Binder said with awe in her voice.
She said she expected to start crying during the performance because of the sheer magnitude of the event. However, she managed to keep contained, even with weeping audience members.
Despite the music’s Latin words, Binder said the song’s message is universally understood.
“With prayer or talking, you have to pay attention,” she said. “But there’s something about music that you don’t have to know what (is being said). The music conveys that sense of serenity.”
Though many people celebrated the day with a sense of renewed hope, Binder said she is aware of the powerful emotions associated with this almost-sacred anniversary.
“I thought everything had returned to normal, but as the date got closer I would see people were starting to remember,” she said.
People in New York City have been especially patient and sensitive with each other lately, she said, much like during the time of crisis last year.
“When so many people die, it makes you realize how important everyone is around you, even if you don’t know them.”
Singing with the Rolling Requiem is something Binder said she would never forget.
“One of the things I really love about singing is I have the opportunity to participate in something like this,” she said. “I wanted to be able to do something that shows I recognize the importance of the event.”