Three Lyrics of Lu Fang Weng
Text by Lu You
…as a wayfarer in the world I have reached my old age…
…tomorrow I will ride on the wind regardless which direction it goes…
…I regret the shadows of flowers are too slight and the candle lights for my drawing room are too bright.
The lyrics by the 12th-century poet Lu You, whose pen name was Fang Weng, sound as intimate as if they were written yesterday. The longing, the joy, and the sorrow in the words affect the reader regardless of any boundary of time and place. I chose three of the lyrics to set to music; each is assigned a particular type of harmony, line, and texture. The piano solo then frames the choir at the beginning and the end. This work was written between 2009 and 2013 and it was my first choral work in the Chinese language.
— Kong-Yu Wong
Scott Anthony Shell
Text by Rabindranath Tagore
Gitanjali 1 is set to a portion of the first poem from the collection of devotional poetry called Gitanjali by the mystic Bengali poet Rabindranath Tagore. Fluent in English, the author also did his own English translation. In this piece, the text was converted slightly from the original which was set in old English, to make it easier to sing and understand.
The composition explores various counterpoint techniques including a brief fugue, following the feelings behind the text: joy, reverence, humility, awe, mystery, etc. The frequent alternations between major and minor modes help create a sense of ambiguity. — Scott Anthony Shell
You have made me endless, such is your pleasure. This frail vessel you empty
again and again, and fill it ever with fresh life.
This little flute of a reed you have carried over hills and dales, and have
breathed through it melodies eternally new.
At the immortal touch of your hands my little heart loses its limits in joy and
gives birth to utterance ineffable.
Your infinite gifts come to me only on these very small hands of mine.
Ave Regina Caelorum
Text by Anonymous
Ave regina caelorum,
Ave Domina angelorum.
Salve radix, salve porta,
Ex qua mundo lux est orta.
Gaude Virgo gloriosa,
Super omnes speciosa.
Vale O valde decora,
Et pro nobis Christum exora.
Hail, queen of the heavens,
Hail, Lady of the angels.
Greet Thee, the Root, Greet Thee, the Door,
From whom to the world light is come.
Praise the Virgin glorious,
Over all beauteous.
Be well, o greatly comely,
And for us with Christ plead.
Photos from the recording session of Ave Regina Caelorum.
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