Prairie Performances

August 4, 1964

Four men sit around a table in the oval office talking

President Lyndon B. Johnson meeting with civil rights leaders Martin Luther King Jr. (left), Whitney Young, and James Farmer in the Oval Office in 1964 Wikimedia Commons

On this week's Prairie Performances, Friday at 7 pm on WILL-FM 90.9, you can enjoy Steven Stucky’s oratorio “August 4, 1964” with the University of Illinois Oratorio Society, the Chamber Singers, Women’s Glee, and the University of Illinois Symphony.

The work was originally commissioned by the Dallas Symphony Orchestra in honor of the centennial of the birth of 36th U.S. President Lyndon B. Johnson. But specifically, the work follows the events of August 4, 1964 during Lyndon Johnson's presidency, including the Gulf of Tonkin incident and the discovered bodies of three murdered civil rights workers in Neshoba County Mississippi, and the dual perspectives of the president and the grieving families.


August 4, 1964 (4/29/16)
University of Illinois Choral Ensembles
University of Illinois Symphony
Andrew Megill, conductor
Ollie Watts Davis, soprano
Kathleen Flynn, mezzo-soprano
Scott Williamson, tenor
David Newman, baritone


Verdi | Stabat Mater

Brahms | Nanie

Stuckey | Oratorio-"August 4, 1964"