Arturo Rodriguez

Like most of us, composer Arturo Rodriguez didn't know how to best express the magnitude of his sorrow when he first heard about the Ghost Ship fire in late 2016. Eventually, he turned to what he knows best — composing — to work out his feelings about the immense loss.

Requiem Without Words is an orchestral work that tells the story of the Ghost Ship tragedy, and is dedicated to the memory of the 36 victims. We sat in on the premiere performance of the second movement, "Kyrie," at SFMOMA's Public Knowledge Library. The piece is performed by Awesöme Orchestra, a contemporary orchestra collective based here in the Bay Area.

'Music and Mortality' is produced in conjunction with local arts nonprofit You're Going To Die. See more in the series here, and find out more about YG2D.