Sonata for Oboe and Piano (2009) Daniel Baldwin (1978-)
I. Prairie Song
II. Trail of Tears
III. Spirit of the Prairie
Outside the White House this June 2020 Federal troops dispersed protesters who were attempting to topple an equestrian statue of President Andrew Jackson, a self-proclaimed “Indian Fighter” who signed and enforced the Indian Removal Act of 1830 under which Native Americans of the Southeastern states who would not end their tribal affiliations were forced to leave their ancestral homes and march over 1,000 miles to prairies west of the Mississippi River, with devastating loss of life along the way. Their route is still called “The Trail of Tears.”
Daniel Baldwin was born in Blackwell, OK, a town built by Andrew Jackson Blackwell in the 1890s on land formerly part of the Cherokee Reservation.
Baldwin’s program note: "The first movement conveys the image of a person standing in a wide open field of grass, staring off into the horizon at a spectacular sunrise. The movement is about the sheer beauty of the Great Plains. The second movement is from the perspective of the American Indians. Fear, doubt, uncertainty and sadness ... The final movement, a Native American dance, sweeps one back into the open field, gazing into the Oklahoma sunset."