The Song of Wandering Aengus

forces: Tenor, Piano
duration: Ca 3'30"
2016
published by: Composers Edition

Programme Note

I was reminded of this poem in (I think) 2014 when listening to a broadcast interview with the poet Glyn Maxwell, whose nuanced reading of it as a personal favourite of his caused it to take fresh root in my mind.

The dedication of this song is to my wife. Because the quality of the poem (and also of Maxwell’s remembered reading) is special, and because also the music signifies an intimately personal response, I felt reluctant to embed my setting within some longer work; so it stands just as it is, on its own. On account of past happy collaborations I am unable to write songs without imagining the singing of my good friend James Gilchrist, whose timbre, diction and uniquely sensitive characterisation therefore informed the conception of this modest offering – as indeed is the case with all my other work in the same medium.

Text by William Butler Yeats.

Programme Note