Piece Comment

Review of Veterans Day Special: Mothers and Sons

Marjorie Van Halteren is a true radio artist. Her sonic texturing and musicality makes her pieces rise above most audio work on public radio today. Nothing makes this clearer than "Mothers and Sons." In this deeply poetic and gently moving artistic piece, Van Halteren proves again her unsung brilliance in the public radio world.

"Mothers and Sons" is one moving and remarkable work. There is no glitz, no boring narrative, no spelling it out for the audience. This is sound art that tells a carefully woven and intelligent story of two mothers grief over the loss of their sons who were tragically killed. One in WWI and the other in the tragedy of the 1988 Lockerbie, Scotland air disaster. This piece describes how it took 18 years for one woman and 14 years for another to create loving memorials for their sons. For those going through grief, this piece can speak to the transformative power of art to heal from and to come to terms with terrible loss.

"Mothers and Sons" would make a touching sonic memorial for Veteran's Day, Memorial Day and Mother's Day. I urge programmers to give a listen and find room in their schedules for this beautiful and moving work.