Repertoire Search

Judith Weir

Publisher: Chester Music

A Spanish Liederbooklet (1988)
Chester Music Ltd
Solo Voices and 1-6 players
Year Composed
8 Minutes
Buy this work
Worldwide Sales   North American Sales

Programme Note
Judith Weir A Spanish Liederbooklet (1988)
A Spanish Liederbooklet is a short song cycle(of about eight minutes’ duration) for high soprano and piano written for Eileen Hulse in 1988. Eileen gave the first performance, accompanied by Graham Johnson, at the 1988 Cheltenham Festival. The texts are all Spanish Romances, by anonymous authors, from the 15th/16th centuries. The songs are sung in the original Spanish.

(The translations given below come from the Penguin Book of Spanish Verse edited by J.M.Cohen.)

1.Romance de Fonte-frida

Fonte frida, fonre frida,• fonte frida y con amor
Do todas las avecicas • van tomar consolación,
Si no es tortolica • qu’está viuda y con dolor.
Por allí fuera pasar • el traidor del ruiseñor;s
Las palabras que le dice • llenas son de traición:
“Si tú quisieses, señora, • yo sería tu servidor”.
“Vete d’ahi, enemigo, • malo,falso, enganador,
que ni poso en ramo verde, • ni en prado que tenga flor;
que si el agua hallo clara • turbia la bebía yo;
que no quiero haber marido • porque hihos no haya, no;
no quiero placer con ellos, • ni menos consolaciíon.
¡Dejame, triste enemigo, • malo, falso, mal traidor,
que no quiero ser tu amiga • ni casar contigo, no!”

[Cool fountain, cool fountain, cool fountain of love, where all the little birds go to console themselves, except the turtle-dove who is widowed and sorrowing. By it there passed that traitor, the nightingale. The words that he spoke were full of treachery: ‘If you would allow me, lady, I would be your servant.’

‘Go away enemy, false deceiver. I do not perch on a green bough, nor in a meadow that is in flower, and if I find the water clear, I drank from it turbid. I do nlot want a husband, so that there may be no children. I want no pleasure with children, nor yet any consolation. Leave me, sad enemy, wicked, false, evil traitor, for I do not want to be your mistress, nor to marry you either’]

2. Romance de Rosa fresca

Rosa fresca, rosa fresca • tan garrida y con amor,
Cuando yo’s tuve en mis brasos • no vos supe servir, no,
Y agora que vos serviría • no vos puedo yo haber, no;
“Vuestra fué la culpa, amigo, • vuestra fué, que mia no;
enviásteme una carta • con un vuestro servidor,
y en lugar de recabdar, • él dijera otra razón:
qu’érades casado, amigo, • allá en tierras de Léon;
que tenéis mujer hermosa • y hijos como una flor.”
“Quien os lo dijo, señora, • no vos dijo verdad, non,
que yo nunca entré en Castilla, • ni allá en tierras de Léon,
sino cuando era pequeño • que no sabia d’amor.”

[‘Fresh rose, fresh rose, so graceful and loving, when I held you in my arms I did not know how to please you, and now that I would please you I cannot have you.’

‘The fault was yours, friend. It was yours, not mine. You sent me a letter by your servant; and instead of delivering it, he told me another story, that you had married, friend, away in the land of Léon, that you had a beautiful child and children as (fair as) a flower.’

‘Whoever told you that, lady. Did not tell you the truth, for I have never been in Castile, nor yonder in the land of Léon, except when I was small and knew nothing of love.’]

3.Serenilla de la Zarzuela

Yo me iba, mi madre, • a Villa Reale:
Erraya yo el camino • en fuerte lugare.
Siete días anduve • que no comí pane,
Cebada mi mula, • carne el gavilán.
Entre la Zarzuela • y Darazután,
alzaba los ojos • hacia do el sol sale;
viera una cabaña, • della el humo sale.
Picara mi nula • fuíme para allá;
Perros del ganado • sálemne a ladrar:
Vide una serrana • del bello donaire.
“Llegáos, caballero, • vergüenza no hayades;
mi padre y mi madre • han ido al lugar,
mi carillo Minguillo • es ido por pan,
ni vendrá esta noche • ni mañana a yantar;
comeréis de la leche • mientras el queso se hace.
Haremos la cama • junto al retamal;
Haremos un hijo • llamarse ha Pascual;
O será arzobispo • pap o cardenal,
O será porquerizo • de Villa Real.

[I was going, Mother, to Villa Real: I lost my way in a difficult place. I went seven days without eating bread, without my mule getting fodder or my hawk getting meat. Between La Zarzuela and Darazután, I lifted my eyes toward the sunrise and saw a cabin from which the smoke rose. I spurred my mule and rode to it; the shepherd’s dogs came out to bark at me, and I saw a highland girl with a pretty grace.

‘Come in, knight, and do not be shy; my father and mother have gone to the town, my darling Minguillo has gone for bread, and will not be back tonight or tomorrow to eat; you shall drink milk while the cheese is being made. We will make up the bed beside the broom field, and we will get a son, whose name shall be Pascual. He will either be an archbishop, a pope, or a cardinal, or he will be the swine-drover of Villa Real.’]

  • Soloist(s)
    Susan Bickley (mezzo-soprano), Andrew Kennedy (tenor), Ailish Tynan (soprano), Iain Burnside (piano)
    Signum Classics:
Close X

Newsletter Signup

Enter your email address to keep up to date with the latest news and special offers from Music Sales Classical.
Your data is secure and you can unsubscribe at any time. Read our Privacy Policy

Click here to receive regular news
© Copyright 2020 Music Sales Classical. Part of the Music Sales Group.