Repertoire Search

Eric Whitacre

Publisher: Chester Music

Three Flower Songs (2009)
Text Writer
Emily Dickinson, Edmund Waller and Frederico Garcia Lorca, trans. Jerome Rothenberg
Chester Music Ltd
Chorus a cappella / + 1 instrument
Year Composed
Buy this work
Worldwide Sales   North American Sales

Programme Note
Eric Whitacre Three Flower Songs (2009)
I hide myself
Just a simple little song, really. All of the musical suggestions come from a careful study of the poem, a quiet, passionate should occasionally speaking a little bolder than the age will allow. She loves almost to the point of distraction, and this mood must prevail in the performance: shy and sullen, her passion surging to the surface only to sink back into the silence that is herself.

Go, lovely rose
The piece is structured around the cyclical life of a rose, and is connected throughout by the opening ‘rose motif’, a seed that begins on the tonic and grows in all directions before it blossoms, dies and grows again. Each season is represented: spring begins the piece, summer appears at bar 13, autumn at bar 26, winter at bar 39 with spring returning at bar 49. The form is based on the Fibonacci sequence (the pattern found in plant and animal cells divisions) – its fifty five bars are a perfect Fibonacci number. The Golden Mean appears at bar 34 as all parts are reunited to complete the flower before its final blossom and inevitable cycle of death and rebirth. Each performance should be approached with the child-like innocence and naivety that allows us to marvel at the return of the rose each spring. The szforzandos throughout must be light and gentle.

With a lily in your hand
Water and Fire. If the performance of this piece connects these contrasting elemental ideas, its success is guaranteed.
Water: At bar 30, this ostinato should be fluid and gentle, only interrupted at bar 32 as the butterflies momentarily spring out of the texture; bars 35-38 the water should slowly transform back to fire. Bar 44 should be tiny bell-tones motivating the next nine bars, another patient, sensuous transformation back to fire.
Fire: Everything else.

EW (c) 2001

  • Conductor
    David Hill
    Music Sales Group:
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.