I wrote the piano piece "It Tolls for Thee" as a response to the killing of five police officers in Dallas in July of 2016. However, it could have been written in reaction to the mass shooting in Las Vegas today or the myriad other tragic events in recent history. In all of these instances I am reminded of the words of John Donne expressing our common humanity and our ultimate connection with each other.
"No man is an island, entire of itself. Each is a piece of the continent, a part of the main. If a cod be washed away by the sea, Europe is the less. As well as if a promontory were. As well as if a manor of thine own or of thine friend's were.
Each man's death diminishes me for I am involved in mankind. Therefore, send not to know for whom the bells tolls. It tolls for thee."