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Of That So Sweet Imprisonment


Of That So Sweet Imprisonment

Product Number: 8769*

Composer: Hall, Juliana

Sku Product Name Price Qty
8769 Of That So Sweet Imprisonment
file_8769-1E Strings in the Earth and Air (Downloadable)
file_8769-2E Winds of May (Downloadable)
file_8769-3E Of That So Sweet Imprisonment (Downloadable)
file_8769-4E In the Dark Pine-Wood (Downloadable)
file_8769-5E Bid Adieu (Downloadable)
file_8769-6E At That Hour When All Things Have Repose (Downloadable)
file_8769-7E O Cool is the Valley (Downloadable)


Juliana Hall wrote her song cycle "Of That So Sweet Imprisonment" for mezzo soprano Stephanie Blythe, for whom Hall had expressed a desire to write a piece. Blythe accepted Hall's proposal, and her request was that Hall write a song cycle for contralto voice. In recounting her motivation for writing this piece, Hall - in a discussion with Blythe at the Fall Island Vocal Arts Seminar (where Hall was the Guest Composer in 2018) - said "You know what I think is really so wonderful is how you [Blythe] communicate, from here to there, right to the just speaks, the words, the text, come right...right to the heart of each person...I was thinking, what a wonderful person, what a wonderful be able to communicate...I've just got the most perfect singer to take these songs, this wonderful subject of love, and present it to the world"
The seven poems Hall set in "Of That So Sweet Imprisonment" were chosen from James Joyce's early book of poems, "Chamber Music" (Elkin Mathews, London) published in 1907.  The poems are arranged in a narrative arc that takes the listener from the presence of love in nature (Strings in the Earth and Air), to the human feeling of emptiness when love is not present (Winds of May), to a description exulting in the joys of human love (Of That So Sweet Imprisonment), to expression of human love such as kissing (In the Dark Pine-Wood), to love's tranformation of a girl into a woman through love making (Bid Adieu), to the feelings of contentment in the early morning after making love (At That Hour When All Things Have Repose), and finally a call for the lovers to go to a special place where they may remain together in love (O Cool is the Valley).
"Of That So Sweet Imprisonment" will be premiered on Saturday, January 19, 2019 at the DiMenna Center for Classical Music in New York City, by Ms. Blythe and pianist Alan Smith, on the third concert of the Sparks & Wiry Cries' NYC songSLAM Festival, entitled "Expressions of Love: Stephanie Blythe and Friends."
I. Strings in the Earth and Air
II. Winds of May
III. Of That So Sweet Imprisonment
IV. In the Dark Pine-Wood
V. Bid Adieu
VI. At That Hour When All Things Have Repose
VII. O Cool is the Valley

Additional Information

SKU (Product number) 8769*
Composer/Arranger Hall, Juliana
Text Author Joyce, James
Voicing & Instruments Contralto and Piano
Difficulty Medium
Language of Text English
Historical Period 21st Century
Popular Vocal Searches Art Song, Vocal Solo
Publisher E. C. Schirmer Music Company

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