by Roland Binet (Braine-l’Alleud, Belgium)
This composition, Rumbula and Ponár, memorializes the victims of the two most infamous mass murder sites of Latvia and Lithuania, Rumbula outside Riga, and Ponár (Polish Ponary, Lithuanian Paneriai) outside Vilnius. More than 130,000 people were killed in total at these two sites. The majority were Jews but there were many others of diverse ethnic and social background at Ponár.
These sacred grounds are usually deserted, and very few seem to be interested in visiting or remembering them, hence my musical tribute to these unfortunate and so-often forgotten victims of a savage and inhuman regime. I played the composition on flute at both sites during my visit to the Baltics over the past year.
The composition is available on Youtube: