Mid-Winter Themes

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Sunday, February 17, 2013

The deep, mid-winter freeze has has made itself felt this year in New York. In the spirit of frost sparkling in twilight and flurries falling at dusk, we explore mid-winter-themed compositions on this edition of The Choral Mix.

Since the Victorian era, choral composers have set thematic texts to music to mark the season. Consider Morten Lauridsen's Mid-Winter Songs, which are settings of Robert Graves's poems, as well as Vincent Persichetti's Winter Cantata featuring woman's voices, a flute and marimba. 

Other homages to winter include The Snow, one of Edward Elgar's elegantly lyrical choral pieces evoking of the sharpness of winter; and Eric Whitacre’s Sleep, originally conceived as a composition set to Robert Frost’s Stopping By Woods on A Snowy Evening.



Elgar/ Wondrous Love/ BYU Women’s Chorus, Jean Apploine
The Snow   

Persichetti/ Persichetti: Choral Works/ Mendelssohn Club of Philadelphia, Tamara Brook
Winter Cantata  

Whitacre/ Whitacre Choral Music/ Elora Festival Singers, Noel Edison

Lauridsen/Lauridsen: Nocturnes/ Polyphony and Britten Symphonia, Stephen Layton
Mid-Winter Songs   

Arr. Michael Hale/ Appalachian Sketches/Gloriae Dei Cantores, Brother Richard Cragg, tenor, Elizabeth C. Patterson

Comments [5]


Please make this program available! The Choral Mix is always a favorite!

Feb. 25 2013 09:49 PM

Ditto, Mike Weber.

Feb. 24 2013 04:29 PM
Phil Bangert from Missouri

No listening button this week Mid-Winter Themes for those of us missing it live?

Feb. 23 2013 12:26 PM
Mike Weber from Clifton, NJ

Hi, missed the program on Sunday and would like to be able to hear it. Is there some reason it is not available on demand?

Feb. 20 2013 03:08 PM
Gary Ekman from Manhattan NYC

Eric Whitacre's "Sleep" was probably one of the first pieces that convinced me, hey, maybe choral music doesn't have to be 300 years old to be good. On YouTube there's an excellent video of him conducting the wonderful St. Olaf College chorus and high school choruses in singing it. There's even a version of the Robert Frost poem version which I think I read somewhere had to be changed because of copyright issues. That's one of my favorite poems of all time since I'm a New Hampshire boy. I made my daughters memorize it when they were kids. So I love the Whitacre version.

Feb. 17 2013 08:13 AM

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