Named for the concentration camp that was home to a shockingly rich cultural life, the Terezin Music Foundation is dedicated to preserving the music of the composers who were prisoners there, and, more broadly, music that was banned by the Nazis as degenerate and dangerous. But the foundation’s mission goes beyond safeguarding the past; it frequently commissions new works. “It’s my hope that the commissions serve as an ongoing memorial and homage to [the censored composers’] unfulfilled gifts,” wrote director Mark Ludwig in an e-mail. “I want to honor the Terezin legacy by inspiring and nurturing the emerging voices of music.”
At the foundation’s annual gala, on Monday, pianist Simone Dinnerstein will premiere “You Can’t Get There From Here,” a 16-minute work by New York-based composer Nico Muhly. At 31, Muhly already has a sterling resume that includes two operas, a number of important commissions, and collaborations with ensembles that range from the American Ballet Theater to Grizzly Bear. His blog and Twitter feed show him to be a sharp and humorous observer of matters musical and otherwise.