Speak, Music!

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Speak Music by Elgar song cover 1902.jpg

”Speak, Music!” is a song written by the English composer Edward Elgar in 1901 as his Op.41, No.2.

The words are from “The Song” in the poem “The Professor” by A. C. Benson.[1] It was dedicated to 'Mrs. Edward Speyer, Ridgehurst'.[2]

At about the same time Elgar wrote a song In the Dawn, as his Op. 41, No. 1, with words from the same poem. The two songs were first performed in the Queen's Hall on 26 October 1901.

Lyrics[edit]

SPEAK, MUSIC

Speak, speak, music, and bring to me
Fancies too fleet for me,
Sweetness too sweet for me,
Wake, wake, voices, and sing to me,
Sing to me tenderly; bid me rest.
Rest, Rest! ah, I am fain of it!
Die, Hope! small was my gain of it!
Song, [song] take thy parable,
Whisper, whisper that all is well,
Say, say that there tarrieth
Something, something more true than death.
Waiting to smile for me; bright and blest.
Thrill, thrill, string: echo and play for me
All, all that the poet, the priest cannot say for me;
Soar, voice, soar, heavenwards, and pray for me,
Wondering, wandering; bid me rest.

Recordings[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ A. C. Benson, "The Professor and Other Poems", London and New York, John Lane, 1900
  2. ^ Mrs. Edward Speyer was Antonia Kufferath, the Belgian-born soprano, daughter of Alice Elgar's old piano teacher Ferdinand Kufferath and wife of Elgar's friend the wealthy banker Edward Speyer. 'Ridgehurst' was their home at Shenley, Hertfordshire. Not to be confused with Sir Edgar Speyer and Lady Speyer (the latter a professional violinist Leonora von Stosch)