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Review: American Declarations

John Quinn of MusicWeb International

[...] Melissa Dunphy’s piece What do you think I fought for at Omaha Beach? is quite remarkable, not least for the choice of text. She sets part of the evidence given in 2009 by an 86-year-old military veteran, Philip Spooner, to a hearing in the Maine State Senate into the Marriage Equality Bill. This elderly man, a life-long Republican, came along to give moving testimony in support of Gay Rights, which he saw as one of the freedoms for which he’d fought in World War II, his experience further coloured, no doubt, by the fact that one of his four sons was gay. Dunphy’s music is unsettling and it’s a very individual setting which respects speech rhythms very well. It’s a thought-provoking piece not least for Spooner’s very moving sentiments. [...]

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