The Tyger

SATB, unaccompanied

An evocative setting of the famous William Blake poem, full of wonder and terror in the face of the natural world as embodied by the power and beauty of a top-level predator. Score and recording below.



$1.75 per copy

Quantity:
NAME FOR LICENSE TO COPY


Please note that for choral works, there is a minimum order of 10 copies. If you wish to have a single copy for perusal purposes and the viewable score does not meet your needs, please Email Us

To Pay by Check or with Purchase Order, Click Here for Order Form

PROGRAM NOTES

In this poem, Blake wrestles with the beauty, power, and essential horror of the natural world as expressed in the nature of a top-level carnivore. Is this the basic characteristic of the universe? Does the universe, on an ultimate level, care about any individual? I am also particularly fascinated by the description of the origin of life on earth, “When the stars threw down their spears, And watered heaven with their tears” in view of the idea that life could very well have originated on earth when essential chemical components arrived through asteroids colliding with the earth.

NOTES ON PREPARATION AND PERFORMANCE

The percussive nature of the text is key–spit those words out! The t’s, particularly, in the word “Tyger” should sound like scary whispers from all over the room.

In the middle section, “When the stars threw down their spears,” etc., keep the tempo going underneath while creating long phrases, phrases arched like the trajectories of meteorites in the night sky.

Text

by William Blake

Tyger! Tyger! burning bright
In the forests of the night,
What immortal hand or eye
Could frame thy fearful symmetry?
In what distant deeps or skies
Burnt the fire of thine eyes?
On what wings dare he aspire?
What the hand dare sieze the fire?
And what shoulder, & what art.
Could twist the sinews of thy heart?
And when thy heart began to beat,
What dread hand? & what dread feet?
What the hammer? what the chain?
In what furnace was thy brain?
What the anvil? what dread grasp
Dare its deadly terrors clasp?
When the stars threw down their spears,
And watered heaven with their tears,
Did he smile his work to see?
Did he who made the Lamb make thee?
Tyger! Tyger! burning bright
In the forests of the night,
What immortal hand or eye
Dare frame thy fearful symmetry?
1794

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *