Ola Gjeilo: Second Eve

Who better to tell us about Second Eve than the composer himself? In some of my pieces, the text is somewhat more the servant of the music than the other way around, and Second Eve is one of those works. The music is mainly inspired by a breath-taking photography taken by one of my favorite…

Vocal Line – Hyperballad and Pendulum

It’s been a while since I posted any of the  Danish choir Vocal Line’s work. Whether it’s their covers of other artists songs such as Björk’s Hyperballad which you can hear below or their singing of new choral music such Morten Kjær’s – Ørehænger "Soulful Scandinavia" series the standard of singing is always extremely high.…

Gerald Finzi (1901-1956): Wherefore Tonight So Full Of Care

The seventh and last of Finzi’s cycle of seven Part-songs setting the poetry of Robert Bridges, Wherefore to-night so full of care’s text is the darkest and most troubled of the set. For Bridges everything about life, including sorrow, was fleeting and this transience provides him with solace. Finzi’s setting reflects this in his harmonic…

Gerald Finzi (1901-1956): Haste On, My Joys!

Haste On, My Joys! is the sixth in the series of seven songs setting poems by Robert Bridges. It’s a five-part setting (SSATB) written shortly after Finzi stopped teaching harmony at the Royal Academy of Music in London. With its very energetic part-writing and rhythmic writing Finzi’s music reflects the youthful exuberance of the first…

Gerald Finzi (1901-1956): Nightingales

Of one thing we can be certain; what Hanslick called ‘the morganatic marriage of words and music’ is the least destructible of all musical elements. The marriages may be happy or unhappy, but, surely as birds must sing, so long as words exist and man is capable of feeling, there will be song. —Gerald Finzi,…

Gerald Finzi (1901-1956): Clear And Gentle Stream!

The fourth in Finzi’s series of seven part-songs setting poems by Robert Bridges Clear And Gentle Stream! reflects  Finzi’s intense love  for  the  English countryside and his acceptance – which he shares with Bridges of  of life’s impermanence. I love this song, its almost madrigalian nature, and the way in which Finzi treats the text…