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Unsheltered Cover Square.jpg

It has been challenging to write a piece that deals with homelessness. The issue is emotional, complex, and can be approached from so many different perspectives.  The range of perspectives, it seems, is almost unbounded because of the number of thoughts and questions this tragedy raises about our society, our neighbors, our families, and each listener's place of relative privilege.

Unsheltered is the term used to describe those who dwell in spaces not designated for human habitation.  This piece, by the same name, attempts to address this crack in our society by telling the story of once person: Cynthia English.  Ms. English, who asked that her name be shared, courageously tells about the experience on the streets of New York City.  Through her individual struggle, and the four movements of this work, we hear about the fractures in our healthcare, housing, and familial institutions.  Further, we celebrate a woman who endured much, and who is able to offer guidance as we seek ways to make a practical, personal difference in the midst of a seemingly entrenched crisis.

I am thankful to Brad Edwards, as he both thought of the idea for the piece and worked so hard to line up funding for its completion.  I am also thankful to the other members of the consortium who helped fund the work, and will certainly do a great service to Ms. English's story as they perform it with excellence.  

And finally, the piece is dedicated to Cynthia, whose willingness to be both vulnerable and thoughtful opens a view in the lives of so many who seem lost, along with a first step toward each of us working to find them.






for Trombone or Bass Trombone and Recorded Sound

This piece was originally written without video accompaniment, but due to COVID and the uptick of virtual performances, the videographer, Amelia Edwards, created a fantastic visual accompaniment with the recorded sound embedded.  

I could not have made one better myself. Because of its effectiveness, it is available for you to use along with this purchase, although not necessary for performance.

Please note, the video file is a few GB. When purchased, room will be required to download it for use.


Brad Edwards, Evan Clifton, James Decker, Nat Dickey, Joe Dixon, Stephen Ivany, Keith Jackson, Gabe Rice, Brittany Lasch, Kirsten Lies-Warfield, Cory Mixdorf, Craig Mulcahy, Gerry Pagano, Austin Seybert, Bill Stanley, Will Timmons, Colin Williams and Jeremy Wilson


performance by Brad Edwards
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