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FIVE SHAKESPEARE SONGS
1. Under the Greenwood Tree
A setting of Amiens’ song from As You Like It. Set in a lilting G modal/major tonality, the three verses are employed strophically.
2. O Mistress Mine
A setting of the clown’s song from Twelfth Night. This song was part of the incidental music written for a production of Twelfth Night at Ward Freman School, Buntingford, in December 1980. Taken from Act 2, Scene 3, it is wistful and juxtaposes an Eb major/minor tonality. The piano accompaniment plays a dominant role in conveying the atmosphere, developing and imitating material from the vocal line.
3. Come away death
A setting of Feste’s song from Twelfth Night, Act 2, Scene 4, part of the incidental music written for a production of Twelfth Night at Ward Freman School, Buntingford, in December 1980. The two verses, in an appropriately wistful mood, are set strophically, rising a tone from D to E modal minor. The piano enhances the emotional atmosphere with melodic development and enhancement throughout.
4. It was a lover and his lass
A setting for baritone and piano of the pages’ song from As You Like It. The four verses are set strophically in a modal D minor. The piano accompaniment varies two ideas: the first, using ostinati semiquavers, evokes a 16th-century secular style; the other, using syncopated quavers, returns to a more modern mood with hints of jazz rhythm and harmony. The final verse amalgamates the two styles of accompaniment.
5. Blow, blow thou winter wind
A setting of Amiens’ song from As You Like It. Set loosely in a modal D minor, this song has an underlying ironic mood that pervades the seemingly upbeat nature of the text.
The second verse concludes ambiguously in G – neither major nor minor.