Catalan text (Poems)
Year of composition
Exactly 40 years separate the 4 Songs on poems by M. Martí i Pol, Op. 26, of this cycle by the same poet.
The motivation to choose texts by Martí and Pol again came from the fascination with the first poem that opens this cycle, “I know I’m getting old”, which I had in mind to set to music for a long time. It was in the month that I turned 60 that, out of personal desire, and perhaps to reflect a little on the passage of time, that I began to compose this cycle.
In order not to leave one poem alone and due to my particular admiration for the poet from Osona, I added three more poems from the same book of poems (Els bells camins) thus closing a cycle with a small emotional journey.
Sé que em faig vell (I know I’m getting old) begins in the low register of the piano, gloomy and dark, following the content of the text. It grows and tenses in the central part reaching a high and vibrant point when the poet asks: What do I know about myself? to gradually return to the initial low register in the final part of the song.
Neu (Snow) follows a completely opposite process to that of the first song: It starts in the high register of the piano to achieve a cold and evocative atmosphere of snow. The central part develops basically in the low register, acquiring the character of a funeral march when the text speaks of the passage of time. After a more agitated space that culminates in a peak point, the music melts into the sharp and soft register of the beginning, searching for light.
Sempre és incert (It’s always uncertain) is a contrasting song: Fast and active with a certain aggression, always following the message of the poet. The piano has a very active and virtuosic part. The harshness of life is reflected in the short, punchy beats of the music. The final part of the song is calm and relaxed due to the moralizing content of the poem.
Creixences (Growths) closes the cycle and curiously also the poet’s book Els bells camins. It comes to be a song of love to life where the poet immerses himself in the dream to search for a lucid and clear meaning in our existence. Musically, it is a song with a lot of variety of sensations and movement, to end with a distant atmosphere, losing itself in the high register towards an imaginable heavenly journey.
This cycle is designed for high voice, soprano or tenor with a wide range (D 3 – B flat 4).
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