work details

Change My Sorrow Into Song

  • Instrumentation: SATB and piano
  • Completed: May 2014
  • Duration: 4 1/2 minutes
  • Texts: Sara Teasdale, "Like barley bending"
  • Program Note:

    Change My Sorrow Into Song is a setting of a pastoral and optimistic poem by Sara Teasdale. She uses the image of barley bending in the breezes is compared to overcoming struggle and adversity. This move from pain to joy is echoed in the music, with the feisty and exuberant rhythms and harmonies of Latin jazz. These sunnier moments are contrasted with more startling dissonances between the tonic and leading tone at dramatic moments in the work. The piece ends faster than it began, with strong syncopated accents and a brightness and fire to the final chords.