A composer’s harrowing experience in Alaska’s Iditarod sled-dog race

Posted on: March 12, 2019

“Yotam Haber is an established composer and pianist, an assistant professor at the University of New Orleans, a former artistic director of New York’s MATA festival and winner of … many other honors and awards,” writes Anne Midgette in Monday’s (3/11) Washington Post. “Since childhood, though, he has had another dream: to race sled dogs in Alaska. Last week, Haber’s dream came true. On March 2, he got to ride through the streets of Anchorage in the ceremonial opening leg of the 2019 Iditarod, the legendary dogsled race, on the sled of Blair Braverman.… Haber had come to Alaska to help with Braverman’s sled dogs, as well as to record the sounds of runners on the snow to incorporate into a piece he was writing for the New York-based Argento Ensemble. But the dream ended three days later when, dragged behind a tipped dogsled, Haber watched his right index finger snap off ‘like a twig.’ … [A] doctor in Fairbanks sewed the finger provisionally.… He got on a plane and flew back to Louisiana. He was taken into surgery a matter of hours after he landed, and was scheduled to learn on Tuesday whether the surgery had been successful.”

Posted March 12, 2019