For Cynthia

For Cynthia

 A CD of new original music, in memory of photojournalist Cynthia Elbaum. Marking the 20th anniversary of her death in Chechnya, this collection seeks to honor her memory, while marking a new direction for composer Tony Jillson.



How it came to be

In the summer of 2012 Tony Jillson was contacted by Cynthia's mother, Jude Elbaum. Jude and her partner Tristram Metcalfe were working on a short film about Cynthia with videographer Kaitlin O'Shea. Jude wanted to know if Tony and his wife Martha Lively were willing to be interviewed for the project, as they both knew Cynthia since childhood, and had continued to keep in contact with her. 

This December marks the 20th anniversary of the death of Ashfield native Cynthia Elbaum. She was a photojournalist on assignment for Time Magazine, covering the Chechen / Russian war in Grozny, the capital of the Chechen Republic.
At about 4 pm on December 22nd, 1994, while Cynthia was photographing survivors sifting through the rubble of the previous nights bombardment, Russian jets attacked again.
She was one of the first journalists to be killed in the war in Chechnya. A Smith College alumna, her photos are now housed in the Sophia Smith Collection at Smith College in Northampton, Ma.

Two years ago Tony Jillson was approached by Cynthia's mother, Jude, to create some original music for a short film on Cynthia that was to be shown at the Ashfield FilmFest. The film was well received, as was the music he created. Because of that positive reaction, he decided to expand on that work and create a full cd's worth of music. He replaced the 'computer' parts with real violin, cello, guitar and percussion. It was recorded at his studio in Ashfield over the course of the past two years.