PROGRAMME NOTES

Reminiscences

(1978)
Mezzo-soprano, alto saxophone, piano

Text: Byron

Reminiscences was written for Meriel Dickinson and her group Music Deco – with Christopher Gradwell (saxophone) and Christine Croshaw (piano). They gave the first performance in the Camden Festival on 18 March 1979.

The work makes explicit the debt of my song ‘So we’ll go no more a-roving’ to the first of Ravel’s Valses nobles et sentimentales, which was the basis of the Organ Concerto. First the song comes with piano; then a snippet of Ravels’ opening; a further verse with saxophone commentary, increasingly energetic leading to cadenzas for all three performers. After a climax the piece concludes with just voice and piano.

So we’ll go no more a-roving
So late into the night,
Though the heart be still as loving,
And the moon be still as bright.

For the sword outwears its sheath,
And the soul wears out the breast,
And the heart must pause to breathe,
And love itself have rest.

Though the night was made for loving,
And the day returns too soon,
Yet we’ll go no more a-roving
By the light of the moon.

© 2008-17 Peter Dickinson

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