Katrina Ballads is a collection of songs inspired by the tragic events surrounding Hurricane Katrina. Scored
for five singers and 11 instrumentalists, the piece uses entirely primary-source texts to paint a rich musical portrait of that devastating and telling week in September 2005. The text-setting includes the words of
Barbara Bush, Dennis Hastert, Mary Landrieu, Kanye West, Anderson Cooper, and George W. Bush's
emblematic 'Brownie, you're doing a heck of a job,' as well as testimonies from survivors and relief workers. With this provocative and poignant material, New York composer Ted Hearne creates a cutting edge musical experience and a vivid look into America's darkest hours. The music is rhythmic, theatrical, and American to the core, possessing an edgy post-minimalist drive and a deep jazz influence. It is a moving experience, challenging us to remember and reflect upon our own history.