Now available: Letter from Italy, 1944: A New American Oratorio

As aired on Connecticut Public Television, June 18, 2015

A DVD of this new documentary film by Karyl Evans, narrated by Meryl Streep, is available for $20, plus shipping and handling. Please follow this link to our online store:

GMChorale Online Store – Click Here

Watch the trailer:


Letter From Italy premiere performance

Letter from Italy, 1944, is a commissioned choral presentation that premiered April 28, 2013, at the Middletown (Conn.) High School Center for the Performing Arts.

Our subject is the story of Dr. John K. Meneely, Jr., who served as a World War II medic and came home to a young family. His letters home, though couched in prose, are elegantly poetic in their description of his experiences and the soldiers with whom he served.

John Meneely’s daughters, Connecticut poet Nancy Meneely and Grammy-nominated composer Sarah Meneely-Kyder, have collaborated on a sensitive and magnificent choral masterwork. Their Letter from Italy, 1944 brings its listeners to tears with its faithful and insightful recounting of their father’s journey.

The Greater Middletown Chorale commissioned the work, with its Artistic Director Joseph D’Eugenio collaborating with the Meneely sisters.

About the Letter from Italy Web Site

This is the place to learn more about Letter from Italy, 1944. Here is a sampling of what you will find here:

  • Read more about the production on this site.
  • Dig Deeper into resources and stories about PTSD—post traumatic stress disorder. In the 1940s and 1950s John Meneely’s struggle was at best unnamed. Today it would clearly be labeled PTSD.
  • The Honor Roll is maintained here. Loved ones who served in the U.S. military were nominated by family and friends. Their names appeared in a special book accompanying the premiere program, and continue to appear on this Web site.