Midnight on the Great Western

Poet: Thomas Hardy (1840-1928)

Source:  Winter Words

Date of Composition:  1953 (Mar. – Sep.)

Publication: Boosey & Hawkes, 1953

Voice Difficulty Level: Moderately Difficult

Subject:  A boy on a train, who doesn’t know his destination

Range:  C4 – G5

Tessitura:  G4 – D5

Tempo: Very slow; 3/4

Duration:  04:05

Vocal Characteristics: Long legato phrases; melismas containing both duple and triple gestures; requires pitch independence

Piano Difficulty Level:  Difficult

Accompaniment Characteristics: Slow chord introduction motive; train-like, staccato eighth and sixteenth pattern during verses; tremolo; many accidentals

Additional Comments: mm. 6, the indication “With deliberate movement” and the numerical tempo indication are not in the manuscript; pp. 6, mm. 4, the manuscript indicates a breath mark after “yours;” no indications of “with deliberate movement” are in the manuscript; pp. 7, mm. 3 the manuscript indicates rall. rather than “pushing forward;” 3 mm. from the end the indication “(from afar)” is not in the manuscript

© Nicholas Perna and Mandy Spivak 2013