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Program note: Love Themes

  • Joseph Twist
  • Source: The Song Company Modart05 September 2005

Joseph Twist
Love Themes
Love Themes is a set of 'pseudo-madrigals', each one discussing different themes of love
in their respective texts. Although this music is clearly modern, there is at times an
underlying influence of the madrigals from the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries. The
first movement, Pain,is a setting of a poem by English poet Edward Thomas called Rain.
Thomas writes of depresslon and solitude as he prays that no-one he has ever loved is
dying or suffering in the way that he is suffering. A much less melancholy love theme
is depicted in Desire, a description of Cupid, the god of love according
to Roman mythology. Cupid is in fact Latin for 'desire'. The text used here is originally
from the madrigaÌ Oh Yes! Has Any Found a Lad? by Thomas Tomkins. This movement in particular
draws on the attributes of the madrigal to paint the image of Cupid with his wings and bow and
arrows as he stings his victims to make them fall in love. Finally, Beauty is a setting of His
Beauty Sparkles
by American poet Paul Goodman in which he expresses adoration for
the beauty of a newborn baby.


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