Home » Spring and Fall

Spring and Fall

Spring and Fall is a setting of Hopkins’ poem by the same title. In the text, the speaker consoles Margaret, who is grieving her first loss (loss of innocence or possibly a death). The speaker attempts a stoic veneer, but emotion seeps through; the speaker’s own struggle is brought out in the rapidly shifting mood of the cello cadenza. The speaker asks Margaret why she is weeping, concluding that she weeps for a universal human condition, something we all feel but can scarcely name: “It is the blight man was born for, / It is Margaret you mourn for.” While both instruments engage in musical commentary on the text, the piano is more of a passive observer of the mood; the cello is more closely aligned to the voice and to the speaker’s emotional struggle, as he tries to comfort Margaret, and ultimately, himself.

Spring and Fall score

Score

NACUSA CD

CD

Text

Spring and Fall
to a young child

MÁRGARÉT, áre you grieving
Over Goldengrove unleaving?
Leáves, líke the things of man, you
With your fresh thoughts care for, can you?
Áh! ás the heart grows older
It will come to such sights colder
By and by, nor spare a sigh
Though worlds of wanwood leafmeal lie;
And yet you wíll weep and know why.
Now no matter, child, the name:
Sórrow’s spríngs áre the same.
Nor mouth had, no nor mind, expressed
What heart heard of, ghost guessed:
It ís the blight man was born for,
It is Margaret you mourn for.

—Gerard Manley Hopkins

INSTRUMENTATION
Medium Voice, Cello, Piano

DURATION
5 1/2 minutes

DATE
2003

PREMIERE
December 11, 2003
New Music Festival
Kulas Hall, Cleveland Institute of Music, Cleveland, OH
Kimberly Lauritsen (mezzo-soprano),Peter Myers (cello), Jacob Adams (piano)

AWARDS
2004 Ohio Federation of Music Clubs Student Composers Contest
2004 International Tampa Bay Composers’ Forum Prize for Excellence in Chamber Music (2nd place)

RECORDING
Greetings from NACUSA (buy the CD)
NACUSA Label
Kimberly Lauritsen (mezzo-soprano),Peter Myers (cello), Jacob Adams (piano)
Recorded live in Kulas Hall, Cleveland Institute of Music

DEMONSTRATION SCORES & RECORDINGS
Please contact the composer.

PARTS & PIANO REDUCTION
Please contact the composer.

© 2011-2017 Aaron Alon. All Rights Reserved.