About the work...
In January 1981, John Barron, Director of
the Pasadena Boys Choir commissioned a contemporary work from Alan
Boehmer that was to express a series of reflections on the
American Civil War through music, words of the period and to be a
"The Union Forever,"
completed in May 1981, recalls the story of the Civil War through the
eyes and hearts of those who fought it, many of whom were no older than
the boys for whom the work was intended to be performed.
It tells its tale, not through the
recollection of military campaigns, but through the very songs and
words the soldiers sang, both Union and Confederate. Bound
together with narrative material, the work provides a continuous
progression from the initial enthusiasm of young men filled with
thoughts of idealism and adventure, through the realities of the
discomforts, suffering and loneliness of war, to the ultimate
conclusion expressed in the poignant words of President Lincoln on
the occasion of the dedication of the national cemetery at