(GRADE 5)THREE SPANISH SONGS
This cycle is a setting of three contrasting poems by Latin-American poets Leopoldo Lugones, Ruben Dario and Jose Marti. "Olas Grises" uses evocative rain and sea imagery to meditate on the nature of life and death. Set as a lyrical, quasi-strophic song, these images are portrayed through the opening percussion raindrop motive and the moaning vocal line used throughout the movement. "Nocturno" is a frantic soliloquy set as an extended opera scene. The piano and percussion accompany the soprano in the opening recitative which is followed by a surreal aria accompanied by the rest of the ensemble. This is followed by a re-statement of both sections. "Sueno Despierto" is a short poem about the contrasting images of a waking dream. Based on a fragment of the lullaby "Nanita Nana," heard in its entirety at the opening, the song is a set of three variations, followed by a coda, which portray these various images. Three Spanish Songs was commissioned by Michael Haithcock and the University of Michigan Symphony Band..