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An Irish Airman Forsees His Death (Premiere)

  • Phoenix Concerts, NYC, NY Church of St. Matthew and St. Timonthy NYC, NY USA (map)
Jorell Williams

Jorell Williams

Mila Henry

Mila Henry

The Premiere

Renowned Baritone Jorell Williams and Mila Henry, piano, give the premiere performance of DH's setting of W.B. Yeats' (1865-1939) great poem, An Irish Airman Forsees His Death on a concert presented by the Phoenix Concerts, New York, at the Church of St. Matthew and St. Timothy. The new setting, comisssioned by the Steven Gerber Trust for premiere on the Phoenix Concerts, is dedicated to Mr. Williams and Ms. Henry.


The Poem

An Irish Airman Foresees His Death

I know that I shall meet my fate
Somewhere among the clouds above;
Those that I fight I do not hate
Those that I guard I do not love;
My country is Kiltartan Cross,
My countrymen Kiltartan’s poor,
No likely end could bring them loss
Or leave them happier than before.
Nor law, nor duty bade me fight,
Nor public man, nor cheering crowds,
A lonely impulse of delight
Drove to this tumult in the clouds;
I balanced all, brought all to mind,
The years to come seemed waste of breath,
A waste of breath the years behind
In balance with this life, this death.

The Phoenix Concerts

Since 2005, THE PHOENIX CONCERTS, New York's “intrepid” and "plucky Upper West Side new-music series" (The New Yorker), has commissioned, premiered, and presented over one hundred and sixty contemporary composers' works on over fifty concerts in Manhattan, Beijing, Saratoga Springs, and Seattle. Thousands of additional listeners have been reached through streaming videos, visuals, and program notes on its comprehensive website ( as well as rebroadcasts on WUOL 90.5 FM, Louisville, Kentucky's Fine Arts Station. 

THE PHOENIX CONCERTS' unwavering commitment to presenting a broad spectrum of new music draws enthusiastically supportive audiences comprised largely of first-time concertgoers. Catered post-concert receptions offer an informal setting where audiences interact with performers and composers. Building from a core season presented at Manhattan’s Church of St. Matthew & St. Timothy, the calendar includes collaborative events hosted in partnership with: American Opera Projects; Beijing New Music Ensemble; Chamber Music America; Downtown Music at Grace; Hudson Opera House; Kyo-Shin-An Arts; Lotte Lehmann Foundation; Beth Morrison Projects; Salon Harlem; Seasons Music Festival; "Composers Now" Festival at Symphony Space; Virginia Center for the Creative Arts; and the Corporation of Yaddo.