Cantigas de Amigo (Songs to a Friend)

Published by Roger Dean Publishing Company 
Cat.# 15/2323R (mvmt I), 15/2324R (mvmt II),
15/2325R (mvmt III & IV), 15/2327R (mvmt V)
variously SSA or SSAA/piano
Secular medieval folk texts in Spanish
Duration: fifteen minutes
Difficulty rating (1-5): 3
Premiered November 5, 2001 by Vox Caelestis Women’s Chorus, La Grange, IL
    I. No Puedo apartarme
    II. Moreno mio
    III. Veo que todas
    IV. Agora que se d’amor
    V. Pues todas
Listen to Cantigas de Amigo
performed by Ithaca College Women's Chorale, Janet Galvan, director; recorded live November 2007

I. No Puedo apartarme   II. Moreno mio   III. Veo que todas   IV. Agora que se d’amor   V. Pues todas

This was the first original (non-arrangement) piece I wrote after not composing for twenty-two years. I was curious what my “voice” would be after being away so long. Melodies and harmonies seemed to flow easily, and the “Spanish” aspect made it easier to find a direction, format, etc. A good friend, Jennifer Duitsman, had formed a cello quartet, and I thought the combination of celli and women’s voices might be very warm and attractive. This seems to be the case, and the piece in general has been so well received that I created a piano version for those who would not be able to find cellists to do the original version. The Boston Conservatory Women’s Choir, directed by John Delorey, recently did a wonderful performance of this piece.



I. No Puedo apartarme
de los amores, madre,
no puedo apartarme.
Amor tiene aquesto
con su lindo gesto,
que prende muy presto
y suelta muy tarde:
no puedo apartarme.
II. Moreno mio
De tu cama a la mia
pasa un varquillo;
aventurate y pasa,
moreno mio.

III. Veo que todos
Veo que todos se quejan;
yo callandro morire.
IV. Agora que se d'amor
Agora que se d'amor
me meteis monja?
Ay, Dios, que grave cosa!  
Agora que se d'amor de caballero,
agora me meteis monja en el monesterio
Ay, Dios, que grave cosa!

V. Pues todas (Juan de Timoneda)
Pues todas las aves vuelan, corazon,
pues todas las aves vuelan,
volad vos.


I. No Puedo apartarme
I can't forfeit love, Mother,
I can't let it go.
When it seems to have
the lightest touch
is when it grabs
and won’t let go:
I can’t forfeit love.
II. Moreno mio
There’s a boat sailing
from your bed to mine;
take a chance and come over,
my sunburnt lover.

III. Veo que todos
Everybody complains;
I will die silently.
IV. Agora que se d'amor
Now that I’ve tasted love
you’d make me a nun?
Oh, God, what an awful blunder!
Now that I know the love of a man,
now you shut me up in a convent.
Oh God, what an awful blunder!

V. Pues todas (Juan de Timoneda)
All the birds fly, heart, 
all the birds fly,
so you try.







Click to See pdf Score
(partial score of mvmt I)

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