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Love Songs (1997)

For SATB chorus
Texts by 7 famous poets

Commissioned by Cathy Nicho (for her husband, Raul), Dianne Nolting (for her husband, George Wolter), Bert Dieringer (for his wife, Janna Blanchard), Peter Henschel (for his wife, Kathy), Ron Barrington (for his wife, Christine), Marshall Rutter (for his wife, Terry Knowles), and an anonymous commissioner.
Premiered by Chanticleer on 11 April 1997
Duration: 15 minutes

Love Songs
(III. Cor Cordium: Love is a Beautiful Dream)

Love Songs
(VI. Romeo and Juliet: For stony limits cannot hold love out)

Love Songs
(VII. Love: All mankind loves a lover)

CD Available
Colors of Love - Chanticleer

This work is available on Colors of Love - Chanticleer.

Songs of Love for Chorus

This work is available on Songs of Love for Chorus.

Chanticleer: A Portrait

This work is available on Chanticleer: A Portrait


The wonderful sound-world — created by the unique and beautiful color of their 12 sublime voices — allied to their abundance of technical skill makes Chanticleer my favorite ensemble.  Love Songs is a 15 minute score made up of 7 songs composed specifically for this sound of their individual, extraordinary voices.  Each of the men has at least one small solo which was precisely imagined and composed for his specific vocal color.  The texts, all classic love poems, are set in a variety of ways ranging from lyrical to humorous to sensuous.  I hope you enjoy the pieces because they were loads of fun for me to compose!

— Augusta Read Thomas

I. Eloise to Abelard, Alexander Pope (1688-1744), line 74
Commissioned by Cathy Nicho for her husband, Raul

Curse on all laws but those which love has made!
Love, free as air at sight of human ties,
Spreads his light wings, and in a moment flies.

II. A Serenade, Edward Coate Pinckney (1802-1828)
Commissioned by Dianne Nolting for her husband, George Wolter

Look out upon the stars, my love...

III. Cor Cordium, William Sharp (1856-1905)
Commissioned by Bert Dieringer for his wife, Janna Blanchard

Love is a beautiful dream.

IV. Jacqueline, Samuel Rogers (1763-1855), Stanza I
Commissioned by Peter Henschel for his wife, Kathy

She was as good as she was fair,
None — none on Earth above her!
As pure in thought as angels are:
To know her was to love her.

V. Don Juan, Lord Byron (1788-1824), Stanza 199
Commissioned by Ron Barrington for his wife, Christine

Alas, the love of women! it is known
To be a lovely and a fearful thing.

VI. Romeo and Juliet, William Shakespeare (1564-1616)
Commissioned by Marshall Rutter for his wife, Terry Knowles

For stony limits cannot hold love out.

VII. Love, Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882)
Commissioned by: anonymous

All mankind love a lover.

To obtain examination or performance material for any of
Augusta Read Thomas's works, please contact G. Schirmer Inc..