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A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z

Duration: 10’
Instrumentation (i): horn, tuba, piano, vibes.
First performance: Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam, 15 April 1978.
Instrumentation (ii): harmonium, tuba, flute, clarinet, harpsichord.
Video performance, Sheffield University, May 1978



A setting of extracts from Psalm 69 for choir (the Swedish Radio Choir) and a group of early music instruments (Serikon): cornetto, mute cornetto, baroque trombone, dulcian; three baroque violas, lirone; organ, electric guitar, theorbo.

Note : De Profundis Aquarum

De Profundis Aquarum

The piece was commissioned for a project called Aqua Alta, which relates to the fact that Venice is sinking and links this with the whole question of the destruction of the environment. The text, from Psalm 69, reflects these concerns in an abstract way.

Fior me it was a pleasure to work for the first time with a group of baroque and renaissance instruments and to take on board all kinds of questions about specific techniques, tuning and so on, and to work directly with some very fine and highly individual musicians, who were invariably helpful. My main link was with the director of Serikon, the baroque trombonist Daniel Stigall, who introduced me to various musicians, with whom I worked personally or through correspondence. 

As a result we have future projects involving my own singer Anna Maria Friman and John Potter, with cornetto, shawm and trombone. (see photo)

 

 



Music for the ballet New Work by Edouard Lock, for La La La Human Steps.

For 4 players: saxophones (soprano, alto, tenor/baritone), viola, cello, piano

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Note : Dido and Orfeo

Dido and Orfeo

The music for Dido and Orfeo involves a reworking of music from Purcell's Dido and Aeneas and Gluck's Orfeo ed Euridice, just as my previous collaboration with Edouard Lock, Amjad, took the Romantic ballet - Tchaikovsky's Swan Lake and Sleeping Beauty as its source.

The music is for a small ensemble, four players, playing saxophones (soprano, alto, tenor/baritone), viola, cello and piano. The original performance and subsequent touring performances, were directed by pianist Njo Kong Kie, who also directed Amjad. The other performers were viola (Jennifer Thiessen, who also performed with Amjad), cello (Jean-Christophe Lizotte) and saxophones (Ida Toninato - who plays soprano, alto and tenor saxophones. I subsequently replaced the tenor with baritone sax, as this is Ida's preferred instrument).

Sequence of work for edition

 (renumbered - original numbers in brackets))

(Purcell: Dido)

I Overture

II Banish Sorrow

III Ah, Belinda

IV Cupid only

V To the hills

VI The Triumphing dance

VII Prelude for the witches

VIII In our deep vaulted cell

IX Thanks to the lonesome vales

X Oft she visits - not used in dance

XI Haste haste

XII Dido's lament

XIII With drooping wings

XIV After the Witches' Prelude

 

(Gluck: Orfeo))

XV (XIV) Che Piangendo - not used in dance

XVI (XIVA) Pantomime

XVII (XIVB) Ah, si intorno

XVIII (XVIC) Chiamo il mio ben cosi - not used in dance

XIX (XV) Dance of the Furies

XX (XVI) Ah quale incognito

XXI (XVIA) Men Tiranne

XXII (XVII) Dance A

XXIII (XVIII) Dance B

XXIV (XIX) Air

XXV (XX) Dance of the Heros - not used in dance

XXVI (XXI) Vieni a regni

XXVII Che faro senza Euridice

XXVIII (XXII) Sposa

XXIX (XXIII) Si Aspetta

XXX (XXIV) Trio

 

Dance Sequence (with current score numberings)

 

(Purcell: Dido)

I Overture

II Banish Sorrow

III Ah, Belinda

V To the hills

VII Prelude for the witches

VIII In our deep vaulted cell

XI Haste haste

VI The Triumphing dance

IX Thanks to the lonesome vales

IV Cupid only

XVIII Dance B (from Orfeo, not Dido))

XIII With drooping wings

XII Dido's lament

 

After the Witches' Prelude (film)

 

(Gluck: Orfeo)

XIX Air

XIVA Pantomime

XIVB Ah, si intorno

XV Dance of the Furies

XVI Ah quale incognito

XVII Dance A

XXI Vieni a regni

XXII Sposa

XVIA Men Tiranne

XXIV Trio

 

 

 



A set of pieces for 4 players: saxophone (various), viola, cello, piano based on music by Purcell and Gluck. 

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Note : Dido and Orfeo

Dido and Orfeo

The music for Dido and Orfeo involves a reworking of music from Purcell's Dido and Aeneas and Gluck's Orfeo ed Euridice, just as my previous collaboration with Edouard Lock, Amjad, took the Romantic ballet - Tchaikovsky's Swan Lake and Sleeping Beauty as its source.

The music is for a small ensemble, four players, playing saxophones (soprano, alto, tenor/baritone), viola, cello and piano. The original performance and subsequent touring performances, were directed by pianist Njo Kong Kie, who also directed Amjad. The other performers were viola (Jennifer Thiessen, who also performed with Amjad), cello (Jean-Christophe Lizotte) and saxophones (Ida Toninato - who plays soprano, alto and tenor saxophones. I subsequently replaced the tenor with baritone sax, as this is Ida's preferred instrument).

This is the third of my collaborations with Edouard, all of which have involved references to earlier music, and we plan more for the future.

Sequence of works

(Purcell: Dido)

I Overture

II Banish Sorrow

III Ah, Belinda

IV Cupid only

V To the hills

VI The Triumphing dance

VII Prelude for the witches

VIII In our deep vaulted cell

IX Thanks to the lonesome vales

X Oft she visits - not used in dance

XI Haste haste

XII Dido's lament

XIII With drooping wings

XIV After the Witches' Prelude

(Gluck: Orfeo))

XV (XIV) Che Piangendo - not used in dance

XVI (XIVA) Pantomime

XVII (XIVB) Ah, si intorno

XVIII (XVIC) Chiamo il mio ben cosi - not used in dance

XIX (XV) Dance of the Furies

XX (XVI) Ah quale incognito

XXI (XVIA) Men Tiranne

XXII (XVII) Dance A

XXIII (XVIII) Dance B

XXIV (XIX) Air

XXV (XX) Dance of the Heros - not used in dance

XXVI (XXI) Vieni a regni

XXVII Che faro senza Euridice (not used in dance)

XXVIII (XXII) Sposa

XXIX (XXIII) Si Aspetta

XXX (XXIV) Trio

 

Dance Sequence

In the dance performance the sequence was sllghtly different, and some numbers were not used

(Purcell: Dido)

I Overture

II Banish Sorrow

III Ah, Belinda

V To the hills

VII Prelude for the witches

VIII In our deep vaulted cell

XI Haste haste

VI The Triumphing dance

IX Thanks to the lonesome vales

IV Cupid only

XVIII Dance B (from Orfeo, not Dido))

XIII With drooping wings

XII Dido's lament

 

After the Witches' Prelude (film)

 

(Gluck: Orfeo)

XIX Air

XIVA Pantomime

XIVB Ah, si intorno

XV Dance of the Furies

XVI Ah quale incognito

XVII Dance A

XXI Vieni a regni

XXII Sposa

XVIA Men Tiranne

XXIV Trio

 

 

 

 



Duration: 27’
Dedicated to Alexander Balanescu
Instrumentation: 2 violins ( with optional Korg M1 keyboard)
First performance: Sala del Arenal, Seville, April 19th 1992

Note : Die Letzten Tage (1992)

Die Letzten Tage (1992)

This set of violin duos was written for Alex Balanescu and Claire Connors to play at the opening of an exhibition in Seville in 1992 called The Last Days.The title of the exhibition came from the sardonic writings of the Austrian Karl Kraus, especially his satirical play The Last Days of Humanity (1922). The idea of the exhibition was to produce work for the end of the century, but quietly, in an anti-millennium spirit. The piece falls into 5 separate sections: "The Roman Ending", "The Venetian Beginning", First Intermezzo, Second Intermezzo and "The Corinthian Middle". I wrote this last section first, in 1990, for a performance by Alex with Liz Perry at the Huddersfield Contemporary Music Festival, though always with the intention of adding other parts.  Some of the sections have operatic connotations. "The Corinthian Middle" paraphrases material from my opera Medea, from the section where Medea seeks to find a solution to her conflict with Jason. "The Roman Ending" alludes to Rossini's perverse ending to his Otello for a performance in Rome, where Desdemona and Othello kiss and make up, and then sing a final love-duet (with equivalent perversity this is the first of the set of pieces). Both operas have connections with Venice: Medea having been commissioned by La Fenice but never performed there, Otello being set in Venice hence "The Venetian Beginning".

Although the pieces are technically difficult - multiple stopping, high register solos, accurate artificial harmonics - the music has a surface which suggests otherwise.



Opera, libretto by Blake Morrison (after the novella by Jules Verne)
Duration: c. 2 hours 10'
12 soloists (2 sopranos, 2 mezzos, 2 counter tenors, 2 tenors, 2 baritones, 2 bass baritones)
Chorus (SATB)
Orchestra:
2 (2), 2 (oboe d'amore, cor anglais),1 + bass-cl, 1 + contra;
4. flugelhorn.2 + bass.0
harp
electric keyboard,
percussion (3 players)
strings: minimum 6.6.5.4.3 (1 amplified)

Note : Doctor Ox's Experiment (Epilogue) (1988)

Doctor Ox's Experiment (Epilogue) (1988)

After the final performances of my opera Medea in December 1984 I was interested in the possibility of writing further operas. One was based on Jules Verne's novella Doctor Ox's Experiment ("Une Fantaisie du Docteur Ox") and I wrote two concert works as pilots for this project. The first work was By the Vaar, an adagio for jazz bass, strings, bass clarinet and percussion written for Charlie Haden and performed by him at the 1987 Camden Jazz Festival. The other was an extended concert aria for high soprano and ensemble for an Arts Council Contemporary Music Network tour in the autumn of 1988. The full opera has been commissioned by English National Opera for performance in 1996.

The action takes place in the Flemish town of Quiquendone, a town that appears on no map, although its geographical location is precisely fixed. It is a town where everything happens very slowly; where an engagement of 10 years is the norm; where the council never reaches a decision; that is, until Doctor Ox and his assistant arrive to install gas lighting, which has a devastating side effect. At the end of the opera, Doctor Ox disappears as mysteriously as he has come, leaving the town to revert to its former existence. At the end, one innocent victim of the doctor, Suzel, recalls at a later date the events that have taken place, and realises that things can never be the same again.  The coda from By the Vaar, where the bass is, effectively, Frantz, Suzel's betrothed, appears transformed in this last scene after Suzel has faced the future nervously. The text is by Blake Morrison, librettist for the opera proper, and the vocal part was specially written for the remarkable soprano Sarah Leonard, for whom I have since written a number of other pieces (The Black River, for voice and organ, and The War in Heaven, for soprano, counter tenor - David James - chorus and orchestra).

This piece is dedicated to Ruby, a typhoon which confined me to my hotel room in Hong Kong, and without whose timely intervention the piece would not have been ready in time for the first performance.

Note : Text of Doctor Ox's Experiment (Epilogue) 1988

Text of Doctor Ox's Experiment (Epilogue) 1988

Dear Frantz, how good to sit with you again beside the banks of the idling Vaar - you with your fishing rod, me with my embroidery, the two of us with needles plying the evening's gentle light. We have found our pulse again - the throb of Quiquendone, a town where nothing changed in seven centuries till the doctor came along. Now Ox has gone and we can live once more like sponges do, or coral: not walking but gliding, not talking but murmuring, calm in the temples of our homes. We are deep and measured as those church bells tolling now for evensong - the bells that will one day ring for us, my love, for Frantz and his Suzel.

How nearly we lost each other - and ourselves. What was it made that happen? What trick did Doctor Ox play with his oxygen? He said he'd light the town up, that each flame would burn like fifteen hundred candles and we need never live in darkness again. But when the streets were dug with gas pipes it wasn't lights that burned - but us. That first night at the theatre when his gas came on, I could feel my cheeks flush, I saw your eyes glow like a tiger's, it was as if we were performers, not the audience, an opera of longing with the heroes and heroines ourselves. Next day it seemed a dream but with these signs to show that it had happened - lost shoes, torn collars, a dent in the middle of a hat.

I blush to think of all that followed. The squabbles, the quarrels. The dancing, the drinking. The revels, the rebellions. The whole town an asylum. The people mad to fight and make love to one another. The dogs turned rabid, the sheep angry as bullocks, the horses snapping at their bits. Fruit rioting in our gardens - melons like belfries, twelve-foot cabbages, strawberries so big you could serve four people from each one. And you Frantz - the way your hair grew and your moustache turned up fiercely at the ends. You were pledged to fight a duel with the banker's son, a duel for my hand after all our years together, and I loved it and egged you both on. We were like nomads, tearing up our roots, losing our tempers and our hymens, wearing out our bodies and our souls.

God knows what would have come of us - our troops were at the gate massing for war against our neighbours when - whoomph - the gasworks blew its crown off, and all of us were thrown to the ground. We lay there in the streets, stunned as these carp are in the river, then slowly rose to upright and shook out the brick-dust from our eyes. Back in the deserts of our drawing rooms, we have found the old pulse again, lazy as the Vaar I with its fishbeds, hurrying no decisions, reaching no conclusions, in a daze of traditions and rites. It's good to be ourselves again, good that Doctor Ox has gone, good that we can go back to our maplessness. Yet I feel that I shall never be the same again, that a new age was born which hasn't been extinguished with the gasworks and I want to be sure, yes our marriage hangs on it, that you, Frantz, have that feeling too.



Text: Kukol’nik
Duration 27’
Dedication: Duncan McTier
Instrumentation:
solo double bass
2 flutes, clarinet, bass clarinet, bassoon, contrabassoon, 2 horns
timpani, percussion (2 players), harp
male chorus (3 part divisi bass voices)
strings (0.0.6.6.4)
First performance: Tramway, Glasgow, September 21st 2002

Note : Double Bass Concerto ("Farewell to St. Petersburg")

Double Bass Concerto ("Farewell to St. Petersburg")

This is the second work that I have written for double bass and orchestra. Each one relates in some way to my own experience as a bass player.

The first, By the Vaar, was written for the jazz bassist Charlie Haden. It includes a lengthy section of improvisation, and features the jazz pizzicato sound (very different from an orchestral pizzicato) drawing on my past as an improvising bassist and drawing on personal preferences and ideals.

The second is for classical bass and here there are a number of musical allusions and references to particular instruments. My own double bass, an instrument I had for over thirty years, was a beautiful old English bass from the early 19th century by Bernard Simon Fendt and had belonged to Sam Sterling, arranger of the Bach Solo Cello Suites for double bass - he used it principally for chamber music. This bass had a very similar sound to Duncan McTier's Lott from the same period. I now have a new bass made specially for me by Michael Hart and modelled, to some extent, on my old Fendt.

But I also have in mind other basses. One relates to the double bass that Koussevitsky had owned, and which was given to Gary Karr by Koussevitsky's widow. Gary has since donated this instrument to the International Society of Bassists.  It is a beautiful 17th century Amati, arguably one of the finest bassists in existence. When I needed to borrow a bass for a concert in Victoria BC in 1999 Gary was kind enough to give me free choice from his 15 instruments - and although the Amati was not  on offer I was fortunate enough to play it.  I think of this as the "Russian Bass". And this leads to a number of Russian connections.

The term "Russian Bass  also refers to a vocal quality, and one with which I became preoccupied when writing my opera G, which has several solo parts for the bass voice - one of which was actually sung by a Russian in the performances in Mainz, and some of the other basses who sang in the opera have Boris Godounov in their repertoire.

I relish too the choral bass voice in works such as Rachmaninov's Liturgies of St John of Chrystostom, where he has parts for low basses ("octavists") going down to G below the bass clef (and the double bass can manage only three semitones lower than this in its normal tuning).  This brings about an unusual area of orchestration in this concerto: the inclusion of a small chorus of bass voices (though the work can be performed without this chorus where necessary).

The text that I use for the bass voices is from the last song in Glinka's song cycle "Farewell to St. Petersburg", and this song, the twelfth, has the same title as that of the cycle.  However any possible sense of melancholy in the song is dispelled by the joyous chorus, as Glinka is happy to be leaving all his marital and financial problems behind. However, I omit the cheerful refrain and use only part of Kukol'nik's text - part of the first verse, the whole of the second, and part of the chorus which follows the fourth verse.  As it happens, in the original version of these songs, a male chorus joined the solo voice for each of the four major key choruses (following the minor key verses).

The orchestration is quite light throughout, so that the singing quality of the double bass can emerge. The emphasis in terms of tessitura is on the bass's upper middle register, though in the closing section there is a passage in natural harmonics. Although the piece is not designed to be a virtuoso showpiece, there is a brief cadenza in which the soloist is supported at times by other solo instruments (bass clarinet, viola, cello, bass).

The piece was commissioned by the BBC for Duncan McTier and is dedicated to him.

Gavin Bryars 

 

 

Note : Text of Double Bass Concerto ("Farewell to St. Petersburg")

Text of Double Bass Concerto ("Farewell to St. Petersburg")

 

Прощайте, добрые друеья!

Нас жизнь раскинет врассыпную;

 

Нигде нет вечно светлых дней,

Везде тоска, везде истома,

 

Листки истёртого альбома.

 

Разгул с отравленным вином

Любовь споддельными цветами,

Весельес золотым ярмом

И лесть с змеиными речами . . .

Прощайте, глупые мечты,

Сны без значения, прощайте!

Другрю жертву суеты

Игрой коварной обольщайте.

 

Ты прав,

Но струн не рвн

Жизнь наша дружбою согрета.

 

Аминь.

 

Farewell my dear friends!
Life will disperse us;
It's true, but wherever I may find myself
I will think of you and miss you.
Nowhere are days forever cloudless,
Everywhere is longing and tiredness,
And, for my memory, life
is only the pages of a worn-out album.

A party with poisoned wine
A love with fake flowers
A joy with golden harnesses
a flattery with serpent's talk....
Farewell, silly reveries,
Dreams without meaning, farewell!
Take another victim of vanity
To seduce with your cunning game.
from Proshchal'naya pesnya (Farewell Song) (Nikolai Kukol'nik)

Prostchayte, dobryye druzya!
Nas zhizn raskinet vrassypnuyu;
Vsyo tak, no gde by ni byl ya,
A vspomnyu vas I zatoskuyu.
Nigde net vechno svetlykh dney,
Vezde toska, vesde istoma,
I zhizn dlya pamyati moyey
Listki istyortovo al'boma

Razgul s otravlennym vinom
Lyubov' s poddelnymy tzvetami
Veselye s zolotym yarmon
I lest' s zmeinymy rechyami...
Prostchayte, glupye metchy,
Sny bez znachenia, prostchayte!
Druguyu jertvu suety
Igroy kovarnoy obolschchayte

Ty prav,
No strun ne rvi.
Zhizn nasha druzhboyu sogreta.

(Amen)

You are right,
But do not tear the strings
Our life is warmed by friendship.

(Amen)

(trans. Anna Tchernakova)



Text: Blake Morrison, based on Jules Verne.
Duration: 22’
Instrumentation: Solo soprano voice, solo piano (originally 2 pianos), string quartet, bass, bass clarinet, electric guitar, 2 percussion (originally including electric keyboard).
First performance: St George's Brandon Hill, Bristol, 11 November 1988.



Duration: c. 37’
Dedication: Valdine Anderson and David James
Instrumentation: soprano, counter tenor, electric guitar, bass clarinet, piano (doubling electric keyboard), 2 violas, cello, bass, percussion (vibraphone, glockenspiel, bells, bass drum, tam-tam, sizzle cymbal)
First Performance: La Botanique, Brussels, October 16th 1998

Note : Duets from Doctor Ox's Experiment

Duets from Doctor Ox's Experiment

In my opera Doctor Ox's Experiment pair of young lovers are sung by a soprano and a counter tenor. They are doubled by another pair of lovers. with the same vocal pairing, who become their rivals in the second act. For this concert work, written for my ensemble, I took the points in the opera where duets between these voices take place, no matter which of the characters was singing, and adding last scene in which Suzel  sings solo, though with the distance voice of another male singer, the baritone Ygène, singing off stage. There are four parts to this concert piece.

Part One opens with a short instrumental opening using material from the very beginning of the opera, and dovetailed into the opening of what was scene 5. This has all the lovers' material from scene 5 - including the duet material sung by the other pair of lovers. In what were previously quartet sections, the two voices sing their own existing parts, the other two parts being taken by instruments. The part of Frantz has a couple of note changes to get rid of the more obvious unisons but Suzel's part is unchanged.

Part Two is the love duet which comprises the whole of Act One Scene 8 and is exactly as it appears in the opera. For the performances by my ensemble I played the jazz bass part.

Part Three has an instrumental section at the beginning to reflect the change for the beginning of the second act and is shorter and faster. This is the duet originally sung by Frantz's rival Fritz and Suzel.

Part Four is the Epilogue from the end of the opera. The soprano part is exactly as it was in the opera. The counter tenor sings Ygène's plaintive off-stage "Ox? Ox?", which is, in any case, quite high in the baritone voice and was sung as a 'head tone' by the baritone. This final section starts with the instrumental opening as it was in the original concert work Doctor Ox's Experiment (Epilogue) which I wrote in 1988 as a first draft for the opera (this instrumental music overlaps the end of Aunt Hermance's final aria in the opera itself).

 

 

 

 



(text: Marie Curie, Etel Adnan, Pope Leo XIII, Jules Verne)
Duration: 38’
Instrumentation: soprano, mezzo-soprano, 2 (original version 4 pianos), 6 percussion
First performance: St John's Smith Square, London, 23 March 1984.

Note : Effarene (1984)

Effarene (1984)

for  soprano, mezzo-soprano, 2 pianos, 6 percussion

Effarene was written in February and March 1984 for performance at the New MacNaghten Concerts in St. John's Smith Square. The original instrumentation - 4 pianos, 6 percussion and 2 voices - related to the fact that it was paired with Antheil's Ballet Mécanique. Effarene is a cantata comprising 4 extended arias, 3 being paraphrases of material written for Robert Wilson's The CIVIL WarS and the fourth utilising imagery from Jules Verne's 20,000 Leagues Under The Sea. In addition, instrumental sections of the work derive from my other operatic collaboration with Robert Wilson, Medea. The vocal sections of Effarene are as follows.

1. Soprano solo, to a text in French by Marie Curie in which she declares her passionate belief in Science. The text is set twice: first lyrically, the second time dramatically.

2. Mezzo-soprano, to a poem in French by Etel Adnan, the Lebanese writer with whom I worked closely in the monastery of La Sainte Baume during the rehearsal period of The CIVIL WarS. The poem, "La Reine de la Mer", is one which she had written many years ago in Beirut and I have since set other poems by her.

3. (following an extended instrumental interlude) Soprano and mezzo-soprano duet to a Latin poem in praise of photography by Pope Leo XIII, "Ars Photographica". Jules Verne had met Leo XIII in 1884 - and Effarene was written in the centenary year of that meeting. I also used this same text for a choral piece called On Photography.

4. Mezzo-soprano to a text in French taken from 20,000 Leagues Under The Sea - a section where Professor Aronnax muses over a globe, extolling aspects of underwater geography and describing certain mysterious underwater currents. The piece ends with an instrumental coda.

The title of the cantata, Effarene, comes from the name of the principle character, a mysterious musician and organ builder, in Jules Verne's posthumously published short story Monsieur Ré-dièze et  Mademoiselle Mi-bémol.

Note : Text for Effarene (1984)

Text for Effarene (1984)

From 20,000 Leagues Under The Sea - a section where Professor Aronnax muses over a globe, extolling aspects of underwater geography and describing certain mysterious underwater currents. The piece ends with an instrumental coda.

 

I (text Marie Curie)

Je suis de ceux qui pensent que la Science a une grande beauté. Un savant dans son laboratoire n'est pas seulement un technicien, c'est aussi un enfant placé en face de phénomènes naturels qui l'impressionnent comme un conte de fées. Nous ne devons pas laisser croire que tout progrès scientifique se réduit à des mécanismes, des machines, des engrenages qui d'ailleurs ont leur beauté propre. Je ne crois pas non plus que dans notre monde l'esprit d'aventure risque de disparaitre. Si je vois autour de moi quelquechose de vital, c'est précisement cet esprit qui parait indéracinable et s'apparente à la curiosité.

(trans)

I am among those who think that Science has a great beauty. A scientist in his laboratory is not only a technician: he is also a child placed before the natural phenomena which impresses him like a fairy tale. We should not be led to only believe that any scientific progress is reduced to mechanisms, machines, gears, as they also have their own beauty. I do not believe either that in our world, the spirit of adventure is likely to disappear. If I see around me something of importance, it is precisely this spirit of adventure which appears ineradicable and similar with curiosity.

 

II (text Etel Adnan)

La mer bouge dans nos lèvres

Et s'élève comme murailles dans nos yeux.

Le vent dérange nos cheveux

Pour en faire piques et épines

Le voici comme une paume sur l'échine

Apaisé des eaux

L'éternité court sur la matière fluide

Ni mouvement ni essence

Mais le visage lavé et délavé de la mer.

Je suis exposé à la nudité de la lumière

Et abandonnée à la lèvre multiple de la mer

Je suis liquide, élément liquide

La terre ses volcans, ses ravines, sa colère.

Je suis ses torrents et sa vase

Et son limon et son printemps

Liquide, élément liquide,

Je suis la mer et unie à la mer.

Liquide, liquide, élément liquide.

Je suis la mer et la Reine de la mer.

 

(trans: Etel Adnan)

The sea moves in our lips and rises as high walls

in our eyes,

we suffer at her soft flesh

 

The wind disturbs our hair,

turning it into spikes and thorns; here it

is, then, like a palm on the subdued

spine of the waters.

 

Eternity runs on this liquid matter which is

neither movement or linear essence, nor the

trace of a daily kiss,

but the washed and washed-out face of the sea.

 

I am exposed to the nudity of the light

And exposed to the multiple lip of the sea

 

I am liquid, liquid element,

The earth, its volcanoes, its ravines, its anger

I am its torrents and its sludge and its silt and its springtime

 

Liquid, liquid element, I am the sea and the Queen of the sea.

 

III (text Leo XIII)

Expressa solis spiculo

Nitens imago, quam bene frontis deus,

Vim luminum refers,

Et oris gratiam imagine.

O mira virtus ingeni

Novumque monstrum

Imaginem Naturae Apelles

Apelles Aemulus

Non pulchriorem pingeret

Expressa nolis, expressa solis spiculo Naturae

Expressa, expressa solis quam bene prontis

Novumque monstrum refers

Nitens imago quam bene frontis deus

Vim luminum O mira gratiam

Expressa solis spiculo

Mira virtus ingeni novum

Et oris gratiam

Mira oris gratiam

 

(trans: H T Henry, 1902))

Sun -wrought with magic of the skies,

The Image fair before me lies:

Deep- vaulted brain and sparkling eyes

And lip's fine chiseling.

 

O miracle of human thought,

O art with newest marvels fraught -

Apelles, Nature's rival, wrought

No fairer imaging!

 

IV

La mer était magnifique, le ciel pur. À peine si le long véhicule ressentait les larges ondulations de l'océan. Une légère brise de l'est ridait la surface des eaux. L'horizon, dégagé de brumes, se prêtait aux meilleures observations. Nous n'avions rien en vue. Pas un écueil, pas un îlot. L'immensité déserte. Mes regards se fixèrent sur le vaste planisphère étalé sur la table, et je plaçai le doigt sur le point même où se croisaient la longtitude et la latitude observées. La mer a ses fleuves comme les continents. Ce sont des courants spéciaux, reconnaisables à leur température, à leur couleur, et dont le plus remarquables est connu sous le nom du Gulf Stream. La science a déterminé sur le globe, la direction de cinq courants principaux: un dans l'Atlantique nord, un second dans l'Atlantique sud, un troisième dans le Pacifique nord, un quatrième dans le Pacifique sud, et un cinquième dans l'océan Indien sud. Il est même probable qu'un sixième courant existait autrefois dans l'océan Indien nord, lorsque les mers Caspienne et d'Aral ne formaient qu'une seule et même étendue d'eau. Or, au point indiqué sur le planisphère, se déroulait l'un de ces courants, le Kuro Scivo des Japonais, le Fleuve noir, qui, sorti du golfe du Bengale où le chauffent les rayons perpendiculaires du soleil de Tropiques, traverse le détroit de Malacca, prolonge la côte d'Asie, s'arrondit dans le Pacifique nord  jusqu'aux îles Aléoutienne, charriant des troncs de camphriers et autres produits indigènes, et tranchant par le pur indigo de ses eaux chaudes avec les flots de l'océan. Je suivais le courant du regard, je le voyais se perdre dans l'immensité du Pacifique et je me sentais entraîner avec lui.



Duration: 23’
Instrumentation (i): 2 pianos, 2 violins, percussion ( 2 or 3 players)
First performance: Rote Fabrik, Zurich, 28 April 1985
Instrumentation (ii): (chamber orchestra) 2.0.2(Bs.cl).0; 0.0.0.0.; percussion (2 or 3 players), 2 pianos, strings.
First performance: Conservatoire de Strasbourg, 10 October 1985.



For soprano, tenor, 2 violas, cello, bass
Text: Petrarch, translated by J. M. Synge
Duration c. 26’
First performance: Anna Maria Friman, John Potter, Gavin Bryars Ensemble
Christchurch Cathedral, Dublin May 15th 2004

Note : Eight Irish Madrigals (2004)

Eight Irish Madrigals (2004)

for soprano, tenor, and ensemble

The Eight Irish Madrigals come from my Third Book of Madrigals. There are seventeen madrigals altogether in the Third Book (for soprano, tenor, bass and lute) and the first nine were written for the Huddersfield Festival.  For a concert in Dublin I am making new versions of four of these nine madrigals for two singers and six instruments. In addition, four new madrigals are being written specially for Dublin where they will be given their first performances.

Like my Second Book of Madrigals, the Third sets sonnets by Petrarch, but this time not in the original 14th century Italian but in Irish prose translations by J. M. Synge. I came across Synge's Petrarch poems in the University of Victoria library, part of a remarkable Synge collection. They were edited by one of Canada's greatest poets Robin Skelton, who died in 1997 and to whose memory these madrigals are dedicated.

Although Synge first became interested in Petrarch when he visited Italy in 1896 it was not until early 1907, after he had met the American poetess Agnes Tobin and read her translations, that he began to work on his own versions. Part of his intention was to translate love poetry into English but they also served as an exercise in writing prose poetry of the kind he could use in his last play Deirdre of the Sorrows which he wrote in parallel with the Petrarch translations. Both the play and the translations were incomplete at the time of his death in March 1909.

Petrarch's sonnets are traditionally divided into two collections: "in vita di Madonna Laura" and "in morte di Madonna Laura"  and Synge's settings are from the second group. During the time that he was writing them he became aware that he did not have long to live and the opening lines of the first poem show this: "Life is flying from me, not stopping an hour"

Only eight translations from Petrarch appeared in the edition of Synge's Poems and Translations published two weeks after his death and each was given a title in imitation of Petrarch. When four more were added in the Collected Works in 1910 more were included and four of these had titles in a different hand than Synge's. Robin Skelton added titles to five more in his 1961 edition of Synge's translations.

Setting Synge's prose poetry was very different from setting Petrarch's originals - in many ways harder - but always immensely pleasurable, rewarding and challenging. Coincidentally one sonnet which I set in the Second Book of Madrigals also appears in the Synge collection and therefore in the Third Book. Curiously, this is the penultimate madrigal in each book (the last one of the Eight Irish Madrigals).

The eight madrigals which form this collection are:

1. He asks his heart to raise itself up to God

2. He wishes he might die and follow Laura (tenor solo)

3. He considers that he should set little store on earthly beauty

4. He finds comfort and rest in his sorrows

5. He is jealous of the Heavens and the Earth

6. He understands the great cruelty of Death (tenor solo)

7. Only he who mourns her and Heaven that possesses her knew while she lived

8. Petrarch is unable to contain his grief

Gavin Bryars

Note : Eight Irish Madrigals (Adapted from 3rd book of Madrigals)

Eight Irish Madrigals (Adapted from 3rd book of Madrigals)

(Soprano, tenor, 2 violas, cello and double bass)

Hire Only

1. He asks his heart to raise itself up to God

2. He wishes he might die and follow Laura (tenor solo)

3. He considers that he should set little store on earthly beauty

4. He finds comfort and rest in his sorrows

5. He is jealous of the Heavens and the Earth

6. He understands the great cruelty of death (tenor solo)

7. Petrarch is unable to contain his grief

8. Laura waits for him in heaven (tenor solo -obligato soprano)

Note : Text of Eight Irish Madrigals

Text of Eight Irish Madrigals

for soprano, tenor, 2 violas, cello and double bass [2004]

 

1. He asks his heart to raise itself up to God

What is it you're thinking, lonesome heart?  For what is it you're turning back ever and always to times that are gone away from you?  For what is it you're throwing sticks on the fire where it is your own self that is burning?

The little looks and sweet words you've taken one by one and written down among your songs, are gone up into the Heavens, and it's late, you know well, to go seeking them on the face of the earth.

Let you not be giving new life every day to your own destruction, and following a fool's thoughts for ever.  Let you seek Heaven when there is nothing left pleasing on the earth, and it a poor thing if a great beauty, the like of her, would be destroying your peace and she living or dead.

 

2. He wishes he might die and follow Laura (tenor solo)

In the years of her age the most beautiful and the most flowery - the time Love has his mastery - Laura, who was my life, has gone away leaving the earth stripped and desolate. She has gone up into the Heavens, living and beautiful and naked, and from that place she is keeping her lordship and her reign upon me, and I crying out: Ohone, when will I see that day breaking that will be my first day with herself in Paradise?

My thoughts are going after her, and it is that way my soul would follow her, lightly, and airily, and happily, and I would be rid of all my great troubles.  But what is delaying me is the proper thing to lose me utterly, to make me a greater weight on my own self.

Oh, what a sweet death I might have died this day three years to-day!


3. He considers that he should set little store on earthly beauty

I was never anyplace where I saw so clearly one I do be wishing to see when I do not see, never in a place where I had the like of this freedom in myself, and where the light of love making was strong in the sky.  I never saw any valley with so many spots in it where a man is quiet and peaceful, and I wouldn't think that Love himself in Cyprus had a nest so nice and curious.  The waters are holding their discourse on love, and the wind with them and the branches, and fish, and the flowers and the grass, the lot of them are giving hints to me that I should love forever.

But yourself are calling to me out of Heaven to pray me by the memory of the bitter death that took you from me that I should put small store on the world or the tricks that are in it.


4. He finds comfort and rest in his sorrows

Sweet spirit you do be coming down so often to put a sweetness on my sad night-time with a look from those eyes death has not quenched, but made more deep and beautiful.

How much it is a joy to me that you throw a light on my dark days, so that I am beginning to find your beauty in the places where I did see you often.

Where I did go long years, and I singing of yourself, I go now, making lamentations for my own sharp sorrows.

It is when I have great sorrow only that I find rest, for it is then when I turn round I see and know you, by your walk and your voice, and your face, and the cloak round you.


5. He is jealous of the Heavens and the Earth

What a grudge I am bearing the earth that has its arms about her, and is holding that face away from me, where I was finding peace from great sadness.

      What a grudge I am bearing the Heavens that are after taking her, and shutting her in with greediness, the Heavens that do push their bolt against so many.

       What a grudge I am bearing the blessed saints that have got her sweet company, that I am always seeking; and what a grudge I am bearing against Death, that is standing in her two eyes and will not call me with a word.


6. He understands the great cruelty of Death (tenor solo)

My flowery and green age was passing away, and I feeling a chill in the fires had been wasting my heart, for I was drawing near the hillside that is above the grave.

       Then my sweet enemy was making a start, little by little, to give over her great wariness, the way she was wringing a sweet thing out of my sharp sorrow. The time was coming when Love and Decency can keep company, and lovers may sit together and say out all things are in their hearts. But Death had his grudge against me, and he got up in the way, like an armed robber, with a pike in his hand.

 

7. Petrarch is unable to contain his grief

There was one time maybe when it was a sweet thing to love - though I would be hard set to say when it was - but now it is a bitter thing and there is nothing bitterer. The man who is teaching a truth should know it better than any other, and that is the way I am with my great sorrow.

       Herself that was the honour of our age; [and] now is in the heavens where all cherish her, made my [times of ease] in her days short and rare, and now she has taken all rest from me.

       Cruel Death has taken every good thing from me, and from this out no good luck could make up for the loss of that beautiful spirit that is set free.

       I used to be weeping and making songs, and I don't know at this day what way I'd turn a verse, but day and night the sorrow that is banked up in my heart, breaks out on my tongue and through my eyes.

 

8. Laura waits for him in heaven

The first day she passed up and down through the Heavens, gentle and simple were left standing, and they in great wonder, saying one to the other:

       'What new light is that? What new beauty at all? The like of herself hasn't risen up these long years from the common world.'

       And herself, well pleased with the Heavens, was going forward, matching herself with the most perfect that were before her, yet one time, and another, waiting a little, and turning her head back to see if myself was coming after her. It's for that I'm lifting up all my thoughts and will into the Heavens, because I do hear her praying that I should be making haste forever.

 

(Text by Petrarch, translated by J.M.Synge)

 

 



First performance Gary Karr, Harmon Lewis, Basses Loaded
cond. Sarah Klein
Philip T Young Recital Hall, UVic, Canada



Duration 7’
Dedication: Ziella and Orlanda
Instrumentation: solo viola, electric guitar, 3 cellos, double bass, bass clarinet
First performance (this version): Studio One, BBC Maida Vale, September19th 1997

Note : Epilogue from Wonderlawn (1994)

Epilogue from Wonderlawn (1994)

In May 1994 I worked with the choreographer Laurie Booth on a full evening piece called Wonderlawn for which I employed a small string group drawn from my ensemble consisting of viola, cello, double bass and electric guitar. In the original dance the final section was accompanied by a version of this Epilogue. I have subsequently modified the instrumentation and made a few other changes to the piece. For live performance I usually add a part for a second viola, as well as a bass-clarinet to reinforce the double bass part. In the published score as well as for the recorded version I include two additional cellos. The piece begins with a simple series of harmonies played as guitar arpeggios sustained by the bowed strings. It then evolves into an extended melody, a kind of song-without-words, for the solo viola supported by occasional duet material for the cello. The music was written specifically for the qualities which my own players bring to this music, particularly the expressive playing of my viola player Bill Hawkes.

The piece is dedicated to my daughters Ziella and Orlanda, both of whom are cellists and both of whom have played this piece with me on many occasions.



Text: Pope Leo XIII
Duration 7'
Unaccompanied voices (TTBar)
First Performance: The Hilliard Ensemble, Little St. Mary's Church, Cambridge July 29th 1997

Note : Expressa Solis (1997)

Expressa Solis (1997)

This piece for three unaccompanied voice was written when I was composer-in-residence for the Hilliard Ensemble's Summer School which was held in Trinity Hall, Cambridge. The Hilliard had planned an evening concert for the second day of the course, but David James had failed to arrive and it transpired that he was very ill and unable to sing let alone teach. The three remaining members devised a new programme so that it could comprise entirely three-part material, for 2 tenors and baritone, but were a little short of material. I learned of this at breakfast on the day of the performance, and said that I would write a piece for them feeling, as I did, a little like a court composer whose duty was to assuage his master's anxieties....  I started after morning coffee at 11 and finished shortly after lunch. I used a text that I had set previously for On Photography and for the third part of Effarene, being a poem in Latin, "Ars Photographica" by Pope Leo XIII and which, for some reason, I happened to have with me. I based the music on the earlier choral setting though with substantial modification given the fewer voices, the different vocal ranges and the absence of accompanying instruments. The piece is in two sections: "Expressa Solis" and "Tersa Perfetta" the second being a nineteenth century translation of the Latin poem, followed by a brief coda.



Environmental piece
Published in EMC Visual Anthology.
Incomplete performance only.



Eleven madrigals for STTTBarB, setting Petrarch, Bronzino, Battiferri and Michelangelo Buonarroti il Giovane.

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Note : Fifth Book of Madrigals ("I Tatti")

Fifth Book of Madrigals ("I Tatti")

The Harvard University Centre for Italian Renaissance Studies - the Villa I Tatti near Florence - has commissioned a number of madrigals from me over the last nine years. The moving spirit behind all these commissions has been the centre's remarkable music librarian, Kathryn Bosi. The first was for the Italian group Vox Altera, who recorded this 8-part madrigal along with the whole of my Second Book (BCGBCD17). Since then I have written eight 6-part madrigals for the German group Singer Pur: four in 2009 and four in 2011. In order to have a complete book three more madrigals have been added to make a book of eleven madrigals The full list is:

(2009: 6-part, STTTBarB - In Memoriam Craig Hugh Smyth)

Cantai, or piango (Petrarch r.s. 229)

I' piansi, or canto (Petrarch r.s. 230)

L'Aura vostr'alma (Bronzino)

Bronzino in ciel l'alma beata luce (Battiferri)

(2011; 6-part - for the 500th anniversary of the birth of the architect Ammannati, husband of the poet Laura Battiferri)

Qual per l'onde turbate (Battiferri)

Fra questa piagge (Battiferri)

Ergitti infin (Battiferri)

Temprato aer sereno (Battiferri)

2013; 6-part, STTTBarB - these continue the pairing of Bronzino and Battiferri, with the addition of a poem by Michaelangelo Buonarroti il Giovane whose setting by Caccini is lost, suggested to me by the scholar and musicologist Janie Cole, who I met through Kathryn Bosi at I Tatti.

Mentre sepolto (Bronzino)

Se fermo e nel destin (Battiferri)

Chi punto ha 'l core (Michelangelo Buonarroti il Giovane)

 

 

 

 

 



Text: Blake Morrison
Duration c. 35’
Dedication: Rita and Martin Cadman
Instrumentation: 3, 4 and 5 voices (A.T.T.T.Bar)
First performance: (first 8) Espo, Finland, December 8th 2000; full set, Engers, August 2001



Text: Blake Morrison
Duration c. 35’
Dedication: Martin and Rita Cadman
Instrumentation: ATTBar/ ATBar
First performance (3 of madrigals): Hilliard Ensemble, Westminster Cathedral, December 21st 1998

Note : First Book of Madrigals (1998-2000)

First Book of Madrigals (1998-2000)

In 1998 I embarked on a project to write a series of madrigals for the Hilliard Ensemble, eventually deciding to collect them in 'books' in the manner of Italian madrigalists, such as Monteverdi or Gesualdo. Indeed, having written many works for the Hilliard Ensemble I sought, in writing these new madrigals, to work within the spirit and aesthetic of those from the Italian Renaissance. I asked my long-time collaborator Blake Morrison if he would be interested in writing some new poems based on the form and content of Renaissance madrigals (John Potter, then of the Hilliard, pointed out that they were chiefly about love and sex - whether an absence or difficulties or abundance of either). The settings are for 3, 4 or 5-part ensemble and the disposition of these ensembles varies. While most of the four-part madrigals are for alto, two tenors and baritone, there are some for three tenors and baritone. Equally of the 3 three-part settings two are for alto, tenor, baritone, while one is for two tenors and baritone.  The poems cover a wide emotional range. Some focus on the details of loving relationships - with a subtle eroticism or, at times, irony -  others deal with love in a more abstract sense.

There are many moments in these madrigals when the individual personalities, both musical and personal, of the member of the Hilliard Ensemble suggest approaches to word setting. The most thorough of these, in terms of the range of internal reference, is the fourth madrigal "Just as the ash-glow", while the last piece in the book "Against dieting", was added as an affectionate joke at the expense of the alto David James. But, as with any music written for particular performers, the work has to exist beyond the confines of the local circumstances of its generation and ultimately purely musical criteria overrule such concerns.

Coincidentally the first four settings were written on Mondays (the first three to be ready for the Lockerbie Memorial Concert at Westminster Cathedral in December 1998, the fourth for a session of filming for a TV profile made by Hessischer Rudfunk in 1999). I wrote the remaining nine on successive Mondays in the summer of 2000 in our summer home in Victoria BC, sometimes writing two, and once three, in a day. The songs are published in the order of their composition.

Second and third books of madrigals now exist, for different vocal formations (written on Tuesdays - 6 part -  and Wednesdays 3-part with lute - respectively)  and a fourth - 8-part - is under way.

The First Book of Madrigals is dedicated to my friends Rita and Martin Cadman

Note : First Book of Madrigals (published ED12679)

First Book of Madrigals (published ED12679)

  1. Web (ATTBar)
  2. Stormy (ATBar)
  3. Almond Tree (ATBar)
  4. Just as the ash-glow (ATTBar)
  5. Within minutes (ATTBar)
  6. Our bodies in the shower (ATTBar)
  7. She'd buy things (TTBar)
  8. All the homely arts and crafts (TTTBar)
  9. In April (ATTTBar)
  10. Who's the more to blame? (TTTBar)
  11. The print of soles (ATTTBar)
  12. My pomegranate (ATTTBar)
  13. Against Dieting (ATTTBar)

 

Note : Text of First Book of Madrigals

Text of First Book of Madrigals

 

1. Web (ATTB)

The spider's lurking-parlour

its vestibule of thread

the spin of it walls

closing in and round us

until the hall we entered

hoping to visit life

becomes the manor of our death.

No skylight over the door

no flue of air

only the trap of shadows

and darkness ripening

in the heart of the sun.

 

2. Stormy  (ATB)

I should have seen from your eyes

and the lightning which broke in them

the storms that lie ahead.

 

The white ecstasy of bedsheets,

smashed pots and broken furniture,

the forked static of your touch.

 

But storms pass like headaches do.

Today the rain, in carpet-tacks.

Alone together, we watch the rain.

 

3. Almond Tree (ATB)

We met under the fork of an almond tree

as March came slowly into leaf.

Our love blossomed like a snow-storm.

White confetti paved the street.

 

What are we to do now autumn's here?

Your eyes are cold, my arms have shrunk.

The years seem a tangle of dry twigs.

Can we get through them without love?

 

4. Just as the ash-glow...  (ATTB)

Just as the ash-glow

and cinder-light of the skies

lose all their lustre

once you've seen the moon rise,

 

and the volted daisies

and bruised delphiniums

pale into nothing

when the sunflower blooms,

 

and the swallows

plinking on their long string

sound merely garrulous

if you've heard the lapwing,

 

so the women I'd been eyeing

were a dimmed light

when you walked into vision

that first night.

 

5. Within minutes...  (ATTB)

Within minutes, our first conversation,

I knew.

Out of nowhere, from the rim of a glass,

the flash

of knowledge, as if their were no choice.

Sewn up.

Like the moment the plane drops through

the clouds

and the land spreads out its patchwork,

and you see,

in crushing detail, the future race to meet you.

Just like that.

 

6. Our bodies in the shower... (ATTB)

Our bodies in the shower.

The hisp and plather

of skins under the water.

The smoke coming off us.

The stream within the stream.

We were rinsed clean

of everything but desire.

 

7. She'd buy things...  (TTB)

She'd buy things, expecting our lives to flourish

because the objects surrounding them had changed.

My line was different: no matter how and where

we lived, we were what we were, unalterably.

 

8. All the homely arts and crafts...  (TTTB)

All the homely arts and crafts -

the soft plinth of a tongue,

the Guggenheim of an ear,

the weave of hands and hair -

 

are nothing next to the science

of those eyes unseen until tonight,

this lip lightly charred from

the soft combustion of a kiss.

 

9. In April... (ATTTB)

In April we'll fly to the Lebanon and live among the vines

and the vines will be young and tender

and our bed will smell of cinnamon

and I'll order them not to wake us till we please.

 

I'll keep you safe

If ever you're lost

I'll go about the streets and broadways

and find you and bring you to my bed.

 

10. Who's the more to blame... (TTTB)

Who's the more to blame?

You for having eyes

a soul could drown in?

Or me for falling in?

 

Let's not argue who's to blame.

The only points at issue

are the ones that shrink

and widen in your eyes.

 

My eyes have grown dim

from patrolling the days

like a camera lens,

trawling for your eyes.

 

Here's you in New York.

Here's you in London.

Your eyes are everywhere.

Where are your eyes?

 

11. The print of soles... (ATTTB)

The print of soles across the bathroom floor:

finding them, I felt like Crusoe, and stooped

to test their warmth and wetness, then rose

to follow where they led, not caring that

I knew the end already, as if she were

a stranger, this woman meeting my eyes

in the dressing-table mirror,

one towel tucked just above her bosom,

another knotted round her head,

and waterbeads still fresh on her nape

and shoulders, which I bent to kiss -

meeting your eyes again as I did -

for the first time ever in the world.

 

12. My pomegranate... (ATTTB)

My pomegranate in the wilderness

my sunlit fishpool

my August torrent

and winter coal.

 

No one can quench the flame

of this ecstasy

our love is strong as death

and rich as fire.

 

13. Against Dieting (ATTTB)

Please, darling, no more diets.

I've heard the talk and why it's

good for one's esteem. I've watched you

jogging lanes and pounding treadmills.

I've even shed two kilos of my own.

But enough. What are love-handles

between friends? For half a stone

it isn't worth the sweat.

I've had it up to here with crispbread.

I doubt the premise, too.

Try to see it from my point of view.

I want not less but more of you.

 

Note: The texts of these madrigals were commissioned from Blake Morrison to be set to music.  Subsequently Blake published 11 of these poems, along with others, under the title "Madrigalia" in his volume of Selected Poems (1999). The first ("Web") and last ("Against Dieting") set in my collection do not appear in that edition. The third ("Almond Tree") sets the original version of his poem, which differs slightly from the one in the poetry collection.



Duration: c.15’
Instrumentation: 2 pianos.
First performance: Palais des Beaux-Arts, Brussels, 2 April 1977