The text of When Your Song Rang Out to Me is by the German Romantic poet Clemens von Brentano (1778–1842) from his drama Aloys und Imelda written in 1812. The musical style that emerged from my setting, however, turned out to be more American-sounding with its prominent use of syncopation and tall chord harmonies.
At the heart of When Your Song Rang Out to Me is an exuberant love song. It joyously celebrates both the vastness of music’s reach – “To the moon and stars . . . to the soaring heavens, to these your song rang out!” – and its mysterious alchemy with love: “While you sang, you dipped yourself into the passion-filled stream of my life . . . As your song rang out to me!”
Commissioned by Dr. David Gerig, former Dean of the College of Fine Arts, ENMU