The Wounded Nurse by Malcolm Smith


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The Wounded Nurse for harpsichord and voice (1999/2000) 1'23"

This piece sets a poem I wrote at dawn on the lawn of Churchtown Farm in Lanlivery near Lostwithiel and the enchanting Luxulyan Valley in Cornwall, 1994-07-13 for my coincidental muse of my Flute Sonata:

To heal The Wounded Nurse -
one should (first) immerse
the soul in soothing sounds
of sweet vibration so that
when she wakes from fev'rish slumber,
(then) all ills will be dispersed asunder.

The music was composed later in 1999, and a serialist introduction was added in 2000, which gives way to a simply rising two-verse chord sequence over which the vocal melody also climbs upwards.

I recorded this piece in 2001 at Dartington on one of the fine harpsichords made by Colin Booth in MCMXCVII. I particularly love the sound made when releasing the keys after they've been held down for some time and the plucked strings have decayed, which is noticeable at the end of the recording.

"Make yourself a nuisance for The Nurses, there are a great..."

[Scores and recordings will eventually be available]


© copyright Malcolm Smith 2004-12-15 - last updated 2004-12-17