Charles Ives: Songs Vol. II



The Complete Songs of Charles Ives


Vol. II




Dora Ohrenstein






Phillip Bush






Mary Ann Hart


mezzo soprano




Dennis Helmrich






Paul Sperry






Irma Vallecillo






William Sharp






Steven Blier






The Songs of Charles Edward Ives




Charles Edward Ives (1874-1954), one of the great creative figures of American music, was a composer with strong opinions about music and about the relationship between music and life. Ives was the first composer to believe that American music could be as good as European, and what's more, to put his beliefs into action. As a young man, fresh out of Yale College, Ives did not follow the usual route of going to Europe to continue his studies. He recognized that his own country, his American town, and his New England family had a rich and unique musical heritage. What the writer Van Wyck Brooks described as the American artists' search for "a usable past," Charles Ives found in his own backyard. He incorporated American sources into his own music as no one had before, and in ways that were frequently far ahead of his time.




Ives was an idealist with moral and ethical views that flowed to him directly from his free-thinking musician father, George Ives, and from the transcendentalist writers, particularly Emerson. The late Ives scholar, editor, and pianist John Kirkpatrick said, "Charles Ives lived his life as though his father was looking over one shoulder and Emerson over the other." Emersonian self-reliance and the will to maintain independent ideas in the face of adversity were at the heart of Ives' philosophy.




Of all Ives' works, it is the songs that are most representative of his ideas, experiences, and philosophies. They range from the most traditional to the wildly innovative, and they reveal an incredibly fertile, talented, and paradoxical mind. The greatest number of songs resemble the conservative Victorian parlor song variety popular in 19th century America: others are lieder similar to German, French, and Italian art songs by well-known composers; several are descriptive of a particular place, person or event; and still others are astonishingly experimental. Each song is interesting in its own way; as a body of works, the songs provide a special kind of autobiography in sound.




This project is the first and only presentation of the complete songs of Charles Ives. It is comprised of four volumes of over 150 short pieces performed by four singers, each with his or her own pianist. The songs are in loose chronological order. When several versions of a song exist, only the published one is presented, with an occasional exception for musical reasons. For example, preferred and included are two different musical settings of Du alte Mutter, both in German rather than the English translation or the original Norwegian. Several songs that were developed from others: Widmung, published originally as There Is a Lane; Fruehlingalied developed into I Travelled Among Unknown Men; Wie Melodien that later became Evidence; and Rough Wind that resembles the earlier song, Judges' Walk, which in turn derived from the main theme of Ives' First Symphony.




Volume two continues the musical diary that began in Volume one with songs by the young Charlie Ives as he grew up in Danbury, Connecticut and studied music with his musician father. Charles was the first-born son (correction to notes, vol. 1, citing Charlie as second-born), who absorbed the experimental ideas of his father along with the many musical sounds in his small New England town. Charles left Danbury for Hopkins Preparatory School in New Haven before entering Yale College.




Forty songs date from the Yale years (1894-98), where Ives led a seemingly normal college life. Lively, good-looking, and well-liked, Ives belonged to a fraternity and a secret society. An accomplished keyboard player, he held the responsible position of organist at Center Church. His school grades were mediocre, except in music. Ives studied with the highly respected composer and professor of music, Horatio Parker. Among Parker's assignments to his students was the setting of texts that had been used earlier by well-known composers. Ives produced several in German and French. Feldeinsamkeit followed Brahms' setting. It is this song that occasioned the now famous anecdote recalled by Ives in his Memos: Arthur Chadwick, a celebrated man of American music, visited Horatio Parker's class at Yale, and when Parker complained that the middle section of Ives' song had "too many keys," Chadwick responded, "In its way, it's almost as good as Brahms. It's as good a song as you could write, Horatio." Ives also set Ich Grolle Nicht to the Heine text used in Schumann's famous lied: Widmung, a more intense setting than the earlier one by Robert Franz and Fruhlingslied, also set by Franz. According to John Kirkpatrick, "Like an independent Yankee, Ives soon took an opposite melodic tack from the great model." Horatio Parker may have influenced Ives more than usually admitted, for after his student years, Ives continued to set texts used by other composers An example heard in Volume two is the French song, Élégie, set earlier by Massenet.




Ives was drawn to writings by the significant 19th century poets. Tarrant Moss, text by Kipling, was composed while Ives was at Yale. This one-page song with its single catchy theme is one of three Kipling texts set by Ives, whose admiration for this poet may have been influenced by Kipling's enormous popularity at Yale where many of Ives' classmates were members of the Kipling Club.




After graduation, Ives went to New York City to make his way in the business world. With other former Yale students, he lived in a series of apartments


collectively called "Poverty Flat." Ives continued to hold positions as church organist, first in Bloomfield, New Jersey, then at Central Presbyterian Church in New York. In 1902 Ives gave up playing music professionally, and from then until 1927, there were no public performances of his music. While building the Ives & Myrick insurance agency into one of the most successful in the country, Ives composed music after work and on weekends. The sounds emanating from the communal piano in the living room of Poverty Flat must have puzzled his roommates. What could they have thought about Slugging a Vampire, an unusual song using the same tune as Tarrant Moss, but with a text by Ives inspired by a film poster!




Ives' life in New York City was portrayed in his music. Central Park was a favorite locale. A short love song, Romanzo di Central Park, with the breezy lighthearted sound of youth, is clearly a tongue-in-cheek spoof of the Victorian parlor song. In the published score, Ives wrote: "Men with high, liquid notes, and lady sopranos may sing an octave higher than written. The voice part of this "Aria," however, may be omitted with good effect. To make a deeper impression, a violin may play the right-hand tune, and may be omittedfor the same reason."




Songs of the parlor song variety included in this volume are: Good Bless and Keep Thee, Dreams, Because of You, Because Thou Art, I knew and Loved a Maid, and Her Gown was of Vermilion Silk. These romantic ballads with their old-fashioned texts are traditional in stanza form, harmony and rhythm. They are frequently stilted and sometimes charming. Ives recognized that some were not very good, and he said so in the Postface to his 114 Songs, a book published and distributed at Ives' own expense in 1921. However, Ives' songs in this genre are sometimes better than he realized. A lovely melody saves There Is a Lane (derived from Widmung) from maudlin sentimentality, and flashes of humor or experimentation can be found, such as the sudden rhythmic change in the middle of Kären, and the unexpected chord at the end of Spring Song.




Ives met Harmony Twichell in about 1905. She was the sister of a Yale classmate, and daughter of Joseph Twichell, a prominent minister in Hartford. Ives' life changed when they fell in love. If he had kept a written diary during their courtship, it would have resembled the songs of that time. Harmony was interested in literature. The couple read poetry together, and Harmony helped Ives choose texts. Charles encouraged Harmony in her own writing. Among the song texts by her are The World's Highway, a song of homey sentimentality, and Spring Song, in which Ives used music that had been composed in 1903. The couple's last collaboration before their marriage was South Wind, Harmony's transcription of a passionate Heine text. A note in the score reads: "Composed originally to "Die Lotosblume" but as the setting was unsatisfactory, the other words were written for it."




With Harmony's companionship and encouragement, Ives gained confidence. He developed more fully the innovative ideas that had appeared fleetingly in earlier works, such as Those Evening Bells, a song that looks simple on the page, yet is tricky in performance with the voice and piano parts in differing rhythms, and Where the Eagle that treats the piano part to harmonies that anticipate Ives' more advanced compositions. The years following Harmony and Charles' marriage in 1908 were to be the composer's richest and most productive. The couple shared ideas about religion and nature, and both were idealists. Evidence and Disclosure are songs that take the listener into the transcendental and universal ideas so vital to Ives' mature thinking. Tolerance, a somewhat later song to a text drawn from a quotation from a lecture by Yale's President Hadley, stimulated Ives to compose a brief and powerful statement about a subject that was important to him. Increasingly dissonant chords build a crescendo under the words: "I know the longing and desire, I know the longing and desire, that went to build my own!"




Notes by Vivian Perlis










I Travelled Among Unknown Men (1901)




I travelled among unknown men,


In lands beyond the sea;


Nor England did I know till then,


What love I bore to thee.




'Tis past, that melancholy dream!


Nor will I quit thy shore


A second time, for still I seem


To love thee more and more.




Among thy mountains did I feel


The joy of my desire;


And she I cherished, turned the wheel,


Beside an English fire.




Thy mornings showed, thy nights concealed


The bowers where Lucy played;


And thine is too the last green field


That Lucy's eyes surveyed.






Allegro (1900)




By morning's brightest beams,


my heart lightest seems,


For in my waking thoughts gay hopes do shine;


Before me lies the day,


and ere it dies away,


Who knows what may be mine!


So straight I leave my night's abode


to fare upon the day's long road


and think with rapture ere sun's decline


What may be mine!


By evening's pale gleam,


still the fancies teem,


And on my resting, new hopes I see;


Before me lies the night,


and ere the morning light,


These hopes may come to me!


So straight I leave my day's abode


to fare upon the night's long road


again with rapture greet I the sunshine


And what may be mine!


Harmony Twichell (later Ives)




Feldeinsamkeit (1900)




Ich ruhe still im hohen grünen Gras


Und sende lange meinen Blick nach oben,


Von Grillen rings umschwirrt ohn' Unterlass,


Von Himmelsbläue wundersam umwoben.


Und schöne weisse Wolken ziehn dahin


Durchs tiefe Blau, wie schöne stille Träume;—


Mir ist, als ob ich längst gestorben bin,


Und ziehe selig mit durch ew'ge Räume.




Quite still I lie where green the grass and tall


and gaze above me into depths unbounded,


By voices of the woodland a constant call,


And by the wondrous blue of Heav'n surrounded.


Lovely snow white clouds drift far and wide,


like silent dreams through deeps of azure wending,


I feel as though I long ago had died,


Still I lie where green the grass and tall


and gaze above me into depths unbounded.


Herman Almers




Harpalus (1902)


(An Ancient Pastoral)




Oh, Harpalus! (thus would he say)


Unhappiest under sunne!


The cause of thine unhappy day,


By love was first begunne.


Thou wentest first by sute to seeke


A tigre to make tame,


That settes not by thy love a leeke;


But makes thy greife her game.


As easy it were to convert


The frost into a flame;


As for to turne a frowarde hert,


Whom thou so faine would'st frame.


Corin, he liveth carelesse:


He leapes among the leaves:


He eats the frutes of thy redresse:


Thou “reapst” he takes the sheaves.


Thomas Percy




The Light That Is Felt (1904)




A tender child of summers three,


at night, while seeking her little bed,


Paused on the dark stair timidly,


Oh, mother take my hand, said she,


Oh, mother take my hand


And then the dark will all be light.


We older children grope our way


from dark behind to dark before;


And only when our hands we lay in Thine, O God!


the night is day, then the night is day,


and there is darkness never more.






Du Alte Mutter (1894?)


Du alte Mutter bist so arm


und schaffst im Schweiss wie Blut,


doch immer noch ist's Herz dir warm,


und du gabst mir den starken Arm,


und diesen wilden Muth.


Du wischtest ab die Thräne mein,


war's mir im Herzen bang,


und küsstest mich, den Knaben dein,


und hauchtest in die Brust hinein


den sieges frohen Sang.


Du gabst mir, was beseligt mich,


das weiche Herz dazu;


drum, Alte, will ich lieben dich,


wohin mein Fuss auch richtet sich,


wohl sonder Rast und Ruh',


Rast und Ruh'.




Oh dearest mother, gone thou art,


And day is darkest night,


But ever warm remains my heart,


'Twas thou my courage didst impart,


My arm of sturdy might.


Thou'st wip'd away each childish tear


When I was sore distrest,


And kiss'd thy little laddie dear,


And taught him songs that banish fear


From ev'ry manly breast.


And more than all thou gavest me


a true and tender heart;


So, mother dear, I'll live for thee


where'er my foot may wander free,


Till death shall come,


till death I'll live for thee.


Vinja (German trans. Edmund Lobedanz)


(English trans. Frederick Corder)




God Bless And Keep Thee (1897?)




I know not if thy love be as a flower in autumn,


and has faded now from me


I know not, if I came now as of yore,


You would greet me I can but pray:


“God bless and keep thee,


God bless and keep thee,


keep thee, my love, for e'er and e'er.”


I know not if thy love be as a fortress


And has withstood all other loves for me


I only know my love for thee is changeless


I still love thee


Each day I pray:


“God bless and keep thee,


God bless and keep thee,


keep thee, my love, for e'er and e'er.”


poet unknown [possibly by one of


Ives' Yale classmates (Kirkpattrick)]






see page 7




Slugging A Vampire (1902)


Ives: “This (music) sic was originally to Kipling's Tarrant Moss but as copyright permission was not obtained, the nice poetry above was written later (not by Mr. Kipling).”




I closed and drew but not a gun,


The refuge of the weak,


I swung on the left


And I swung on the right


And I landed on his beak;


He started to pull the same old stuff


But I closed in hard and called his bluff


Yet his face is still a stickin' in the yellow sheet


And on the billboard a down the street.


Charles Ives






I closed and drew for my love's sake


That now is false to me,


And I slew the Reiver of Tarrant Moss


And set Dumeny free.


And ever they give me gold and praise


And ever I mourn my loss—


For I struck the blow for my false love's sake


And not for the men of the moss!






Kären (1894)


Do'st remember child!


Last autumn we went thro' the fields,


How oft thy blue eyes on me were bent,


It flashed across my mind,


That till then I had been blind;


Tell me little Kären what thy heart felt then?


Clara Kappey, after Parmo Karl Ploug




Dreams (1897)


When twilight comes,


when twilight comes with shadows drear,


I dream of thee, of thee dear one;


and grows my soul so dark and sad,


sad as shadows drear,


They tell me not to grieve love,


for thou wilt come,


But Oh! But Oh!


I cannot tell why I fear their words are false:


I dream of thee, I dream of thee, love!


And thou art near, art near till I awake.


When I look back,


when I look back on happier days,


my eyes are filled, are filled with tears;


I see thee then in visions plain, so true,


so full of love.


But now I fear to ask them if thou art 'live;


They tell me not to grieve love!


For thou wilt come at last:


I dream of thee, I dream of thee, love!


And thou art near, art near till I awake.


Baronese Porteous




The World's Highway (1893)




For long I wander'd happily


Far out on the world's highway


My heart was brave for each new thing


and I loved the far away.


I watch'd the gay bright people dance,


We laughed, for the road was good.


But Oh! I passed where the way was rough


I saw it stained with blood.


I wander'd on till I tired grew,


Far on the world's highway


My heart was sad for what I saw


I feared, I feared the far away,


the far away.


So when one day,


O sweetest day,


I came to a garden small,


A voice my heart knew called me in


I answered its blessed call;


I left my wand'ring far and wide


The freedom and far away


But my garden blooms with sweet content


That's not on the world's highway.


Harmony Twichell (later Ives)




Because Of You (1898)




What have you done for me, dear one,


With eyes so true?


This grim old world looks golden bright


Because of you.


What have you done for me, dear heart,


With lips so true?


The words of others kindly seem


Because of you, of you,


because of you.


What have you done for me, dear heart,


With hand so true?


The clasp of others heartfelt feels


Because of you.


Queen of my heart and Queen of Queens


With love so true,


The years would drag with leaden feet


Wer't not for you, for you,


wer't not for you, wer't not for you.


poet unknown




RomanzO Di Central Park (1900)




Grove, Rove,


Night, Delight


Heart, Impart,


Prove Love,


Kiss, Bliss,


Blest, Rest,


Heart, Impart, Love.


Leigh Hunt




Because Thou Art (1899?)




My life has grown so dear to me


Because of thee.


My maiden with the eyes demure


And quiet mouth and forehead pure,


Joy makes a summer in my heart,


Because thou art.


The very winds melodious be


Because of thee.


The rose is sweeter for thy sake,


The waves in softer music break,


On brighter wings the swallows dart,


Because thou art.


Joy makes a summer in my heart,


On brighter wings the swallows dart,


All things in my delight have part,


Because thou art.


poet unknown






I Knew And Loved A Maid (1898 or 99?)




I knew and loved a maid once on a time,


I met and walked with her in mountain clime,


Through meadows fair, 'midst maidenhair,


We wander'd 'neath bright skies of many, many years ago.


I had the vow and token too of her sincerity,


I thought her love would reach e'en through eternity.


Vows unkept, love now gone


Life's one blessing now


Is in dreams to live those days of long ago.


I knew and loved a maid once on a time,


I met and walked with her in mountain clime,


Through meadows fair, 'midst maidenhair,


We wander'd 'neath bright skies of many, many years ago.


poet unknown




Her Gown Was Of Vermilion Silk (1897)




Her gown was of vermilion silk, and her hood was all of lace,


And ev'ry movement, as she came, was full of dainty grace,


was full of dainty grace.


I doff'd my cap and bowed, and said,


“I venture to suppose


You are the garden spirit of a lily or a rose,


the garden spirit of a lily or a rose.”


She passed me by without a smile,


and with her peacock fan


Express'd disdain, such cold disdain


as none but Lady Lovely can,


as Lady Lovely can.


poet unknown






Flag Song (1898)


Accept you these emblems at starting


when you face to the west or the east,


When the coast a shadow departing


slowly fades till its presence has ceased,


May the flag which grants protection,


even linger in recollection,


For the land of our flag may affection


only be by long absence increased,


For the land of our flag may affection even be,


even be increased.


For we know that the selfish and cruel


shall be bowed at the torch of the rod,


When these flames we set to the fuel


in the love and the goodness of God,


When the red blood of the nation,


and the white of the pure of creation,


with our Yale's deepest blue in relation,


shall be waved in the flag of our sod,


With our Yale's deepest blue,


when our Yale's deepest blue shall be waved


in the flag of our sod.


Henry S. Durand




Spring Song (1904)


Across the hill of late came spring


and stopped and looked into this wood


and called and called.


Now all the dry brown things are ans'wring,


With here a leaf and there a fair blown flow'r,


I only heard her not,


and wait and wait.


Harmony Twichell (later Ives)




Ich Grolle Nicht (1899)




Ich grolle nicht, und wenn das Herz auch bricht


Ewig verlor'nes Lieb!


Ich grolle nicht.


Wie du auch strahlst in Diamanten pracht,


es fällt kein Strahl in deines Herzens Nacht,


Das weiss ich längst.


Ich sah dich ja im Traume,


und sah die Nacht in deines Herzens Raume,


und sah die Schlang' die dir am Herzen frisst,


ich sah, mein Lieb, wie sehr du elend bist.


Ich grolle nicht.






I bear no grudge, though my heart may break,


eternally lost love! I bear no grudge.


However you may shine in your diamond splendor,


no beam of light falls in the darkness of your heart.


I have long known this. I saw you in a dream,


and saw the night within the emptiness of your heart,


and saw the snake that is eating your heart—


I saw, my love, how very miserable you are.






Widmung (1897?)


O danke nicht für diese Lieder,


mir ziemt es dankbar dir zu sein;


du gabst sie mir, ich gebe wieder,


was jetzt und einst und ewig dein.


Dein sind sie alle ja gewesen;


aus deiner lieben Augen Licht


hab ich sie treulich abgelesen:


kennst du, ach kennst du die eignem Lieder nicht?


Wolfgang Müller von Konigswinter




O do not give thanks for these songs,


It is more suitable for me to be thankful to you.


You gave them to me, I give back


What is now and once and forever yours.


They are all yours;


From the light of your beloved eyes


Have I faithfully gathered them:


Do you not know your own songs?




Wie Melodien Zieht Es Mir (1898?)




Wie Melodien zieht es,


Mir leise durch den Sinn,


Wie Frühlingsblumen blüht es,


Und schwebt wie Duft dahin,


Doch kommt das Wort und fasst es


Und führt es vor das Aug,


Wie Nebelgrau erblasst es


Und schwindet wie ein Hauch.


Und dennoch rugt im Reime


Verborgen wohl ein Duft,


Den mild aus stillem Keime


Ein feuchtes Auge ruft.


Klaus Groth




Like melodies it passes


gently through my mind.


Like spring flowers it blooms


and hovers about like fragrance.


Yet if a word comes and holds it


and brings it before the eye,


like a gray mist it fades


and vanishes like a breath.


And still there remains in the rhyme


a hidden fragrance,


which softly from the silent bud


can be called forth by tears.




There Is A Lane (1902)




There is a lane which winds towards the bay


Passing a wood where the little children play;


There, summer evenings of days long past,


Learned I a love song,


and my heart still holds it fast!


Charles Ives




Élégie (1901)




O, doux printemps d'autre fois,


O, doux printemps, d'autre fois,


verte saisons,


Vous avez fui pour toujours!


Vous avez fui pour toujours!


Je ne vois plus le ciel bleu;


Je ne vois plus le ciel bleu;


je n'entends plus les chants joyeux des oiseaux!


En emportant mon bonheur,


mon bonheur


O, bien aimé


tu t'en es allé!


Et c'est en vain,


que le printemps revient;


Oui, sans retour avec toi le gai soleil


Les jours riants sont partis! partis!


Comme en mon coeur tout est sombre et glacé! glacé!


Tout est flétri!


Pour toujours!






O, sweet spring of another time,


O, sweet spring of another time,


green seasons,


You have flown forever!


You have flown forever!


I no longer see the blue sky;


I no longer see the blue sky'


I no longer hear the joyful songs of the birds.


Carrying away my happiness,


my happiness


O beloved


you went away!


And it is in vain


that spring returns;


Yes, the bright sun returns without you.


The laughing days are gone! gone!


Thus in my heart all is dark and icy, icy.


All is withered.








Evidence (1910)




There comes o'er the valley a shadow,


the hilltops still are bright;


There comes o'er the hilltop a shadow,


the mountain's bathed in light;


There comes o'er the mountain a shadow


but the sun ever shines thro' the night!


Charles Ives




Berceuse (1900)


O'er the mountain towards the west,


as the children go to rest,


Faintly comes a sound,


a song of nature hovers round,


'Tis the beauty of the night;


Sleep thee well till morning light.


Charles Ives




Rough Wind (1902)




Rough wind, that moanest loud grief too sad for song;


Rough wind, that moanest loud grief too sad for song;


Wild wind when sullen cloud knells all night long;


Wild wind when sullen cloud knells all night long;


Sad storm, whose tears are vain,


Bare wood whose branches stain,


Deep caves and dreary main,


Wail, for the worlds wrong!






The South Wind (1899)




When gently blows the South Wind


first through the Northern Wood,


With eagerness he goeth


where long a tree has stood.


He lifts the leafy cov'ring


that lies close at its base,


and there with sweetest welcome,


looks up his old love's face.


Beneath the snow she waits him


and keeps her leave's brave dress,


Her fair blossom opens


at his first caress.


Each year that flower greets him,


For him, for him alone


her heart with love's beauty,


through her brief day has shone.


Harmony Twichell (later Ives)




No More (1897)


They walked beside the summer sea


And watched the slowly dying sun;


And `Oh', she said, `come back to me,


My love, my own, my only one!'


But, while he kissed her fears away,


The gentle waters kissed the shore,


And, sadly whisp'ring, seemed to say,


`He'll come no more! he'll come no more!'


Alone beside the autumn sea


She watched the sombre death of day;


And `Oh,' she said, `remember me,


And love me, darling, far away!'


A cold wind swept the wat'ry gloom,


And, darkly whisp'ring on the shore,


Sighed out the secret of his doom,


`He'll come no more! he'll come no more!'


In peace beside the winter sea


A white grave glimmers to the moon;


And waves are fresh, and clouds are free,


Shrill winds pipe a careless tune.


One sleeps beneath the dark blue wave,


And one on the lonely shore;


But, joined in love, beyond the grave,


They part no more! they part no more!


William Winter




On Judges' Walk (1897-98?)




That night on Judges' Walk, the wind


was as the voice of doom;


The Heath, a lake of darkness, lay


Silent as the tomb.


The vast night brooded, white with stars,


Above the world's unrest;


The awfulness of silence ached


Like a strong heart repressed.


That night on Judges' Walk,


We walked beneath the trees,


There was a word we could not say,


Half uttered in the breeze.


That night on Judges' Walk


We said no word at all,


And now no word shall e'er be said


Before the Judgment Day.


Arthur Symons




A Night Thought (1903?)




How oft a cloud, with envious veil,


Obscures yon bashful light


Which seems so modestly to steal


along the waste of night!


…thus the world's obtrusive wrongs obscure,


with malice keen,


Some timid heart which only longs


to live and die unseen.






The Song Of The Dead (1898?)




Hear now the Song of the Dead,


Hear now the Song of the Dead


in the North by the torn berg edges,


by the torn berg edges


They that look still to the Pole,


They that look still to the Pole,


asleep by their hidestripp'd sledges.


Song of the Dead in the South


in the dust of the sere river courses.


Song of the Dead in the East


in the heat-rotted jungle hollows.


Song of the Dead in the West in the Barrens,


the snow that betray'd them,


the gravemound they made them.


Hear now the Song of the Dead


Hear now the Song of the Dead!






Where The Eagle (1900)




Where the eagle cannot see,


Where cold winds can never be,


Where the sun's bright course doth glow


very, very far below,


There, in ever lasting rest,


Dwell those saints whom Death hath blest,


there in ever lasting rest.


M.P. Turnbull




Tolerance (1909)




How can I turn from any fire,


or any man's hearth stone?


I know the longing and desire,


I know the longing and desire,


that went to build my own!


Kipling as quoted by Arthur


Twining Hadley




The Love Song Of Har Dyal (1898?)




Alone upon the housetops to the North I turn


and watch the lightning in the sky,


The glamour of thy footsteps in the North,


Come back to me, Beloved, or I die!


Below my feet the still bazar is laid,


Far, far below the weary camels lie,


The camels and the captives of thy raid.


Come back, Beloved, or I die!


My father's wife is old and harsh with years,


And drudge of all my father's house am I.


My bread is sorrow and my drink is tears,


Come back to me, Beloved, or I die!






Omens and Oracles (about 1900)




Phantoms of the future, spectres of the past,


In the wakeful night came round me sighing


crying “Fool beware!”


Check the feeling o'er thee stealing,


Let thy first love be thy last,


Or if love again thou must


at least this fatal love forbear,”


Amara! Amara! Amara.


Now the dark breaks, now the lark wakes;


Now the voices fleet away,


Now the breeze about the blossom;


Now the ripple in the reed;


Beams and buds and birds begin to sing and say,


“Love her for she loves thee,


Love her for she loves thee.”


And I know not which to heed.


O, cara Amara Amara.


poet unknown




Those Evening Bells (1907)




Those evening bells!


Those evening bells


Many a tale their music tells


of youth, and home and that sweet time,


When last I heard their soothing chime.


And so 'twill be when I'm gone;


That tuneful peal will still ring on


while other bards shall walk these dells,


and sing your praise, sweet evening bells.






Frühlingslied (1896)




Die blauen Frühlingsaugen schau'n aus dem Gras her vor;


das sind die lieben, lieben Veilchen, die ich zum Strauss erkor,


die ich zum Strauss erkor.


Ich pflücke sie und denke, und die Gedanken all,


die mir im Herzen seufzen, singt laut die Nachtigall.


Ja, was ich denke, singt sie laut schmetternd, dass es schallt;


mein zärtliches Geheimniss weiss schon der ganze Wald.


Ja, was ich denke, singt sie, laut schmetternd, dass es schallt;


mein zärtliches Geheimniss weiss schon der ganze Wald, der ganze Wald.






Spring's blue eyes peer forth from out of the grass;


they are the dear violets which I gather for a bouquet,


which I gather for a bouquet.


I pick them and think, and all the thoughts


which sigh in my heart, the nightingale sings aloud.


Yes, what I am thinking, it blares out resoundingly;


my tender secret is now known to all the woods.


Yes, what I am thinking, it blares out resoundingly;


my tender secret is now known to all the woods.




Dora Ohrenstein, soprano,is known for her achievements in performing and building audiences for American vocal repertoire, particularly by living composers. She was solo vocalist of the internationally acclaimed Philip Glass Ensemble for over 10 years, and has her own touring production called Urban Diva, featuring works written for her by Anthony Davis, Scott Johnson and others. A compact disc of Urban Diva, is being released in 1993 on CRI's Emergency Music series. In 1993 Ms. Ohrenstein joined pianist Kathleen Supove and double bassist Robert Black in forming Bermuda Triangle, a trio devoted to innovative programming of chamber music from diverse periods, styles and cultures. A favorite among composers on the "cutting edge," she has had works written for her by such emerging talents as Linda Bouchard, Guy Klucevsek, and Ben Neill. Other recent recordings are Conrad Cummings' "Photo-Op" on the CRI label and songs by Ben Johnston on New World; she can also be heard on several CBS Masterworks discs of music by Glass.




Phillip Bush was awarded the 1983 Beethoven Foundation Fellowship and made his New York debut at the Metropolitan Museum of Art the following year. Since then, he has become increasingly active as solo recitalist and chamber musician, with a particular devotion to the contemporary repertoire. Mr. Bush has collaborated with many of today's most outstanding artists in performances throughout North America, Europe, and Japan. He has appeared as guest artist with the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center, performs frequently on New York's Bargemusic series, and has been in residence at the Newport Music Festival since 1983. Mr. Bush has performed throughout the world with the ensembles of composers Steve Reich, Philip Glass, and Scott Johnson. He has appeared as soloist with the Houston and Cincinnati symphonies, among others, and was awarded the NEA Solo Recitalists' Fellowship for the 1992-93 season. Mr. Bush is a graduate of the Peabody Conservatory, where he was a student of Leon Fleisher.




Mezzo soprano Mary Ann Hart has delighted audiences and critics alike with her performances. She has sung with the New York Philharmonic, the Minnesota Orchestra, the American Composers Orchestra, the San Antonio Symphony, Boston's Banchetto Musicale, and has been a guest artist with the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center. Her festival appearances include the Marlboro, Connecticut Early Music, Basically Bach, and San Luis Obispo Mozart Festivals.




Using the international competition as a showcase for her communicative powers, Miss Hart won First Prize in the Concert Artists Guild International Competition, Second Prize in the 1987 Carnegie Hall International Competition for American Music, and top prizes in the Washington International and Robert Schumann International Competitions. Recital appearances have taken her to 26 American States, Austria, Germany, and Rumania. She is on the faculty of Vassar College.




Out of sight (but still in earshot) Miss Hart did voice characterizations for the Disney animated film Beauty and the Beast, and has made recordings under the auspices of the Eterna, Arabesque, Telefunken-Decca, Musical Heritage, Chandos, and Nonesuch labels.




Almost from the outset of his career Dennis Helmrich has concentrated on chamber music and the art song literature. It is as a sonata partner and accompanist that he now makes most of his concert appearances, in a busy schedule which in the last few years has taken him to thirty states, Canada, Latin America and Europe, to stages such as Avery Fisher, Alice Tully, and Carnegie Halls in New York, the Masonic Auditorium in San Francisco, Symphony Hall in Boston, and the Ordway Theater in St. Paul, with artists such as Kathleen Battle, Phyllis Curtin, Richard Stilwell, D'Anna Fortunato, Eugenia Zukerman and the late, legendary Charles Holland. A continuing interest in contemporary music has led him to first performances of many American compositions, and to recordings on Orion, Spectrum and Nonesuch. Helmrich is a member of the faculties of the State University of New York at Purchase, as well as the Jewish Theological Seminary and the Manhattan School of Music in New York City. Since 1970 he has been Vocal Coach at the Tanglewood Music Center.




Paul Sperry is recognized as one of today's outstanding interpreters of American music. Although he is equally at home in a repertoire that extends from Monteverdi opera and the Bach Passions to Britten's War Requiem and hundreds of songs in more than a dozen languages, he brings to American music a conviction and an enthusiasm that has brought it to life for countless listeners. Sperry has world premieres of works by more than thirty Americans to his credit including Leonard Bernstein, William Bolcom, Stephen Paulus, Louise Talma and Robert Beaser. He created Jacob Druckman's Animus IV for the opening of the Centre Georges Pompidou at Beaubourg in Paris in 1977, and Bernard Rands' Pulitzer Prize winning Canti del Sole with a New York Philharmonic in 1983 under Zubin Mehta. He teaches a course in American song at the Juilliard School and was formerly President of the American Music Center. He loves the songs of Ives and has been singing many of them since he began giving recitals.




Irma Vallecillo is that rare pianist who puts a prodigious solo technique and remarkable musical gifts at the service of chamber music. Her repertoire is extensive and spans every style from baroque to contemporary. She has premiered more than twenty works, and actively enjoys finding out-of-the-way pieces from every period. She has appeared as soloist with the Los Angeles Philharmonic, the Louisville Orchestra, the Utah Symphony and the Casals Festival Orchestra Orchestra among others, but in recent years she has appeared principally as a collaborator with such distinguished artists as Jean-Pierre Rampal, James Galway, Julius Baker, Benny Goodman, Richard Stoltzman, David Shifrin, Sidney Harth, Charles Treger, Aurora Ginastera, Nathaniel Rosen, Paul Neubauer, Walter Trampler, Benita Valente, Bethany Beardslee and Paul Sperry. Ms. Vallecillo has recorded extensively on the RCA, Louisville Orchestra, Moss Music, Delos, Desmar, Orion, Laurel, Avanti and Albany Records labels. She has recently joined the faculty of the Hartt School of Music where she is in charge of building a graduate program in piano chamber music and accompanying.




The extraordinary American baritone William Sharp is widely known as a versatile singer who has received the highest critical acclaim for his work in concert, with orchestra, in opera and on recordings. In 1989 he was nominated for a Grammy Award for Best Solo Vocal Performance for his recording featuring the works of American composers on the New World label. As a recitalist, he has appeared in major concert halls throughout the country, including the Kennedy Center and Carnegie Hall. He has sung with orchestras such as the New York Philharmonic, St. Louis Symphony, San Francisco Symphony, Minnesota Orchestra, Rochester Philharmonic and the St. Paul Chamber Orchestra. He has made numerous appearances with the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center, and is a frequent participant in music festivals, including Mostly Mozart, Aspen, Marlboro, New England and Bethlehem Bach Festivals and the Maryland Handel Festival. In 1987 Mr. Sharp won First Prize in the Carnegie Hall International American Music Competition and is also a winner of the Geneva International Competition and the Young concert Artists International Auditions.




Steven Blier enjoys an eminent career as accompanist and musical collaborator. Among the many artists he has partnered in recital are June Anderson, Roberta Peters, Arleen Auger, and Maureen Forrester. Mr. Blier is founder and co-artistic director of the New York Festival of Song, a recital series featuring new works, standard repertoire and rediscoveries, innovative programs, and many of America's finest singers. Their recording of Leonard Bernstein's last work, Arias and Barcarolles, won a 1991 Grammy Award. A champion of American music, Mr. Blier has premiered works by Aaron Kernis, William Bolcom, Lee Hoiby, John Musto, and many others; his repertoire also includes a solo program of ragtime, blues, and stride piano pieces by composers ranging from Copland to Eubie Blake. He is currently on the faculty of SUNY Purchase.






The Complete Songs of Charles Ives · Vol. II


Dora Ohrenstein, soprano · Phillip Bush, piano-1


Mary Ann Hart, mezzo soprano · Dennis Helmrich, piano-2


Paul Sperry, tenor · Irma Vallecillo, piano-3


William Sharp, baritone · Steven Blier, piano-4




I Travelled among Unknown Men-4 (1:47)




Allegro-3 (1:20)




Feldeinsamkeit-2 (3:30)




Harpalus-1 (1:27)




The Light that is Felt-4 (1:53)




Du alte Mutter-3 (2:23)




God Bless and Keep Thee-2 (2:09)




Du alte Mutter-4 (2:16)




Slugging a Vampire-2 (:25)




Tarrant Moss-4 (:29)




Kären-3 (:57)




Dreams-1 (3:07)




The World's Highway-3 (2:24)




Because of You-3 (2:29)




Romanzo di Central Park-1 (1:56)




Because Thou Art-2 (1:49)




I Knew and Loved a Maid-4 (1:57)




Her Gown was of Vermilion Silk-3 (1:35)




Flag Song-3 (2:27)




Spring Song-1 (1:06)




Ich Grolle Nicht-2 (3:02)




Widmung-1 (2:23)




We Melodien-2 (2:57)




There is a Lane-3 (1:16)




Éégie-4 (3:48)




Evidence-2 (1:16)




Berceuse-1 (1:27)




Rough Wind-3 (1:14)




South Wind-2 (2:20)




No More-1 (3:32)




On Judge's Walk-2 (1:42)




A Night Thought-3 (:58)




Song of the Dead-4 (2:57)




Where the Eagle-1 (1:39)




Tolerance-3 (:43)




The Love Song of Har Dyal-1 (2:13)




Omens and Oracles-2 (2:35)




Those Evening Bells-3 (1:26)




Frühlingslied-4 (1:35)






Total Time = 1:16:42






Producer & Engineer: Judith Sherman · Executive Producer: Dora Ohrenstein


This recording is made possible, in part, by a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts.


Recording Date: September 17-27, 1991


Recording Location: American Academy of Arts & Letters, New York


Photograph: Charles Ives, right, with Hopkins teammate. From the Charles Ives Archives, Yale University.