Setting of Charles Anthony Silvestri text, commissioned by the University of Kansas. Oread (pronounced OH-ree-ad) is the name of the hill on which the University of Kansas stands. The piece was commissioned as a farewell or encore standard for the KU Choirs, but also served as a farewell from the composer to KU, as it was written near the end of his degree program there. Has been performed by several accomplished choirs, including multiple performances by choirs at the Cork Choral Festival in Ireland.
Charles Anthony Silvestri writes:
In the Spring of 2007 John Paul Johnson, the Director of Choral Activities at the University of Kansas, approached me with a commission to write a poem in collaboration with composer Dan Forrest which would become a farewell or encore standard for the KU choral program. After a discussion with the composer, I chose as a starting place the English folk song “Barbara Allen.” It seemed plaintive to me, and with a mood evocative of farewells. I chose to use its structure, meter and rhyme-scheme as a base for my poem. I found out that I was influenced by this choice, and the finished poem has the feeling of a folk song. I even toyed with more antiquated forms, like thee and thou, but rejected those in favor of a less formal, but still old-fashioned “ye,” which Dan liked.
The KU Chamber Choir offered the World Premiere of “Oread Farewell” on Tuesday, October 16, at Corpus Christi Catholic Church (my home parish!!) in Lawrence, KS.
©2007 by Charles Anthony Silvestri
The time has come to say farewell;
And though my heart be heavy,
I promise still to remember ye
E’en though we say, “Farewell.”
The flow’rs that bloom’d in Summer’s sun
Have lost their fleeting glory,
And all but died in Winter’s chill;
And we must say, “Farewell.”
So brief a time has come and gone
Since first we sang together;
But bittersweet is that music now
That we must say, “Farewell.”
Now we must part, and fare ye well
In all that ye endeavor!
And last, I pray–fondly think of me,
Whene’er you say, “Farewell.”
Tags: Professional/Collegiate Repertoire, Silvestri