Saturday, 10 July 2010


“Death is a delightful hiding place for weary men.” – Herodotus

A delicious song from Song Saturday from the pen of Hector Berlioz, being inspired by William Shaekespeare. It is “La Mort d’ Ophélie” – Ophelia’s Death, his opus 18/2, sung perfectly by Cecilia Bartoli and accompanied faultlessly and sensitively by Myung-Whun Chung on the piano.

“There is a willow grows aslant a brook,
That shows his hoar leaves in the glassy stream;
There with fantastic garlands did she come
Of crow-flowers, nettles, daisies, and long purples
That liberal shepherds give a grosser name,
But our cold maids do dead men's fingers call them:
There, on the pendent boughs her coronet weeds
Clambering to hang, an envious sliver broke;
When down her weedy trophies and herself
Fell in the weeping brook. Her clothes spread wide;
And, mermaid-like, awhile they bore her up:
Which time she chanted snatches of old tunes;
As one incapable of her own distress,
Or like a creature native and indued
Unto that element: but long it could not be
Till that her garments, heavy with their drink,
Pull'd the poor wretch from her melodious lay
To muddy death…”

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