The Dreams Flow Down, Too

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The Dreams Flow Down, Too is about dark colours, saturation and getting lost.
The piece was commissioned by Ergodos for pianist Michael McHale, as part of the ‘Schubert Project’. In this context, the piece is designed to act as an interlude between the third and fourth of Franz Schubert’s Op. 90 Impromptus for solo piano. It may also be performed as a stand alone piece.

The title comes from Nacht und Träume, one of Schubert’s most moving lieder, published in 1825 – two years before the composition of the Op. 90 Impromptus, and three years before Schubert’s death at the age of thirty-one.

The words of the lied are from a poem by Matthäus von Collin:

Heil’ge Nacht, du sinkest nieder;
Nieder wallen auch die Träume
Wie dein Licht durch die Räume,
Lieblich durch der Menschen Brust.
Die belauschen sie mit Lust;
Rufen, wenn der Tag erwacht:
Kehre wieder, heil’ge Nacht!
Holde Träume, kehret wieder!

In English:

Holy night, you sink down;
The dreams flow down, too,
Like your moonlight through the rooms,
Through the people’s silent chests.
They listen softly with desire;
They call, when day awakens:
Come back, holy night!
Sweet dreams, come back!

The delirious prose of Samuel Beckett’s short dramas was echoing around my head as I composed. There are many reports of Beckett’s affection for Schubert – and Nacht und Träume is the title of one of his television plays which makes use of a fragment of the lied. Similarly, the final bars of my piece whisper a little of the opening melody.

Sub-title: Prelude # 9
Instrumentation: solo piano
Duration: circa 10′
Date of composition: 2014
Commissioned by Ergodos for pianist Michael McHale as part of the “Schubert Project”.
First Performance:
Score: Please email to obtain the latest score.