|PIANO ON THE ROCKS
Sandrine Erdely-Sayo, Artistic Director
Elizabeth Peña, Co-Director
THEIR OWN VOICES: STORIES OF MIGRANT WOMEN
for Soprano - Mezzo-Soprano - Piano - Electronics
April 25, 2021
The narrative in this piece is based on the stories of two women migrants. Estella was brought to the US by
her cousin when she was seven years old, to join her parents, who had migrated when she was very young.
She then grew up in Maryland and was eventually able to apply for and receive DACA (Deferred Action for
Children Arrivals) status, attend college and legally work.
Maria José fled Honduras after being pursued and threatened by a former partner and father of her son,
Angel. After entering Mexico via Guatemala, she was pursued by gang members who beat and raped her.
Eventually, she was able to enter the US as an asylum seeker with her son. She was welcomed into the
home of a sponsor family where she has continued to live for the last few years as her application for asylum
slowly works its way through the system.
Composer Anna Rubin interviewed these two women between 2018 and 2020 and has edited their stories for
use in this piece. Their stories are powerful, heart-wrenching, and at times even light-hearted. They both
show amazing resilience, pluck and courage as they maintain their home-cultures while becoming part of
The piece alternates between their stories until, as the piece concludes, their stories become interleaved with
each other as both face the promise and uncertainty of their lives.
Their Own Voices promises to be an exciting part of the 2021 festival.
Piano on the Rocks International Festival is the proud recipient of the 2020 Project Grants Artists and
Creators by New Music USA.