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There will come soft rains

author of text

So far I have written at least 14 songs with texts by Sara Teasdale. I am drawn to the beauty and poignant simplicity of her poetry. This poem seemed to be filled with the beauty of nature, so in the song I decided to use polyphony, as I had imagined the voices of the singers swaying like the wheat crop gently in the wind. On my musical canvas was an impression of a world peaceful and full of life—frogs, birds, trees and rain—and I didn’t change this positive atmosphere when in the middle of the poem there came a stranger, darker phrase:

And not one will know of the war, not one
Will care at last when it is done.

In the climax of the song I used my most rich harmonic color, although the text there seemed to not necessarily call for that:

Not one would mind, neither bird nor tree
If mankind perished utterly;
And Spring herself, when she woke at dawn,
Would scarcely know that we were gone.

With this seemingly incompatible relationship of text and music, I agreed to Sara’s idea about the importance to emphasize the endless existence of nature, even if there is war somewhere in the world.

from notes by Ēriks Ešenvalds © 2020


Ešenvalds: There will come soft rains & other choral works
Studio Master: SIGCD603Download onlyStudio Master FLAC & ALAC downloads available


Track 1 on SIGCD603 [3'57] Download only

Track-specific metadata for SIGCD603 track 1

Recording date
10 April 2018
Recording venue
Lagerquist Concert Hall, Pacific Lutheran University, Tacoma, Washington, USA
Recording producer
Adrian Peacock
Recording engineer
John Struzenberg
Hyperion usage
  1. Ešenvalds: There will come soft rains & other choral works (SIGCD603)
    Disc 1 Track 1
    Release date: January 2020
    Download only
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