Peter Fribbins
Programme Notes
' Softly, in the dusk ...' - Peter Fribbins

This one-movement piece was commissioned by the Rosamunde Trio and premiered by them in the Wigmore Hall in March 2007. It is based on a remarkable and rather haunting short poem called 'Piano' by D. H. Lawrence:

Softly, in the dusk, a woman is singing to me;
Taking me back down the vista of years, till I see
A child sitting under the piano, in the boom of the tingling strings
And pressing the small, poised feet of a mother who smiles as she sings.

In spite of myself, the insidious mastery of song
Betrays me back, till the heart of me weeps to belong
To the old Sunday evenings at home, with winter outside
And hymns in the cosy parlour, the tinkling piano our guide.

So now it is vain for the singer to burst into clamour
With the great black piano appassionato. The glamour
Of childish days is upon me, my manhood is cast
Down in the flood of remembrance, I weep like a child for the past.

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