Nevermore will the wind

Scoring

–Version 1 (chamber ensemble):  SAT choir, SATB choir; French horn, percussion (vibraphone, marimba), handbells (5 optional tuned cup gongs)
–Version 2 (chamber orchestra):  SAT choir, SATB choir; French horn; percussion (vibraphone, marimba), handbells (5 optional tuned cup gongs); strings; harp

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Details

8:00
2001

The Princeton Singers
Steven Sametz, director

The Princeton Singers
Dedicated to the victims of September 11, 2001

The Princeton Singers
Steven Sametz, director

Instrumental parts version 1, ESC #7122, (SAT/SATBB, Horn & 2 Perc)
Instrumental parts version 2, ESC #7124, (SAT/SATBB, Horn, 2 Perc, Harp & Strings [33221])
Piano/choral rehearsal score, ESC #7328

Program Notes

On September 11th, 2001 I was in Rome.  I was very touched by the support shown to me as an American by the Italian people.  When I returned to the U.S., I went to the site of the World Trade Center.  It was a bitterly cold day in late December, with wind coming from the south and skies as clear as those I remembered from the images of September 11th.  Normally on arriving in New York City, there is a moment when I adjust to the volume, tempo, and edge of city life — the press of people moving quickly and purposefully. That day, people moved quietly along narrow construction alleyways, making room for strangers. When I reached Ground Zero,  it seemed as though time stopped for a moment.  There was just the clear sky, the sound of the wind, the whispered hush of voices in the street.

It’s been said that the world will never be the same after September 11th, and something certainly changed for me standing there in the bright sun where so much was suddenly empty.  Never more will the wind is a response.  I used H.D.’s lyric poem of loss and added to it the Gregorian chant for the Requiem mass (first heard in the solo horn).  I tried to recreate the whispering and the chill of the wind in the opening, a ghostly remembrance of those who are gone.  The central section is a chorale of comfort, and the piece returns to a choral statement of the Requiem text, ending as it began —  still voices on the wind.       SS

Text

Never more will the wind
cherish you again,
never more will the rain.

Never more
shall we find you bright
in the snow and wind.

The snow is melted
the snow is gone
and you are flown:

Like a bird out of our hand,
like a light out of our heart,
you are gone.

–H.D.  (Hilda Doolittle)