Amo! (Madrigal)

Scoring

SATB chorus a cappella or with harp

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Details

4:30
2004

The Princeton Singers
Steven Sametz, director

The Princeton Singers

The Princeton Singers on "I Have Had Singing" (Arsis)
Steven Sametz, director

ECS #7274, (SATB [divisi], opt. harp)

Program Notes

Amo! (Madrigal) is the third of Amo! trilogy, which includes:

1. Munus (A Gift)  SATB, optional harp; also orchestrated
2. Dulcis amor (Sweet Love)  TTBB,  optional harp
3. Amo (Madrigal) (I Love) SATB, optional harp

It may be performed separately.

When it came time in 2004 to write my annual commission for The Princeton Singers, I chose to complete the set of Latin lyrics as a triptych with Amo! (Madrigal) (I Love), setting lines of Baudri of Bourgueil (1046-1130). What we know of Baudri indicates he fell in love emphatically and often. He gives the sense of an adolescent’s insistent, unquenchable ardor at the sight of his new love in highly alliterative lines. There is a sense of almost tripping over the words in excitement until the youth reflects on his bliss, when a chorale-like moment of calm ensues:

Plurima concimus de nobis pauca loquuti.
Entuit morum subito dulcedo tuorum.

Just speaking a few words, we learned much about each other.
Unexpectedly, the sweetness of your character dazzled me.

Text / translation

Amo (Madrigal) 

Olim te vidi, vidi voluique videre,
ipseque te viso plus mihi complacui.
Plurima conicimus de nobis pauca loquuti Entuit morum subito dulcedo tuorum.
Te si quid valeat mecum mea musa perennet.
Ipse salutatus tandem te triste recessi,
teque salutato tristis ego redeo.
Verius…qui de vobis poterit dicere: plus amo te.
Te si quid valeat mecum mea musa perennet,
te quoque perpetuis perpetuet titulis.

Baudri of Bourgueil  (1046-1130)
from “Ad Maiolum”

Translation

Amo (Madrigal) (I Love)

When I first saw you, I looked and wanted to stare.
The more I saw of you, the more I was pleased.
Just speaking a few words, we learned much about each other.
Unexpectedly, the sweetness of your character dazzled me.
If my muse can do anything, let her immortalize you.
After you bid me farewell, at last I departed, leaving you sad;
After I said farewell to you, I went away, sad myself.
Truly, who among you can say: “I love you most.”
If my muse can do anything, let her immortalize you.
And preserve you with everlasting renown.