Promise of Living, The (tr Duffy)
Subtitle: From The Tender Land
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None discovered thus far.
The name Aaron Copland (1900-1990) is synonymous with American classical music. His most popular works, Appalachian Spring, Billy the Kid, Rodeo, Fanfare for the Common Man, and El Salon Mexico, each infused a sense of folk music with his distinctive compositional style that was able to connect with a wide audience. Although written later than the aforementioned works, The Promise of Living is representative of this same distinctive Copland style. The work serves as the final movement of an orchestral suite Copland based on his opera The Tender Land.
This beautiful piece is quite transparent and chamber-like at its outset. As the work builds, Copland dramatically introduces the folk song Zion’s Walls and begins to alter the feel between duple and triple quite frequently. The melodies intertwine and overlap as the piece builds to its striking climax.
- Program Note by McCracken Middle School Symphonic Band concert program, 18 December 2013
Copland's only full-length opera, The Tender Land (1952-1954), tells the story of a young girl, Laurie Moss, who grows up on a Midwestern farm and is about to leave home. Two numbers from this opera have become choral favorites. In The Promise of Living, at the close of the first act, three generations of the Moss family and their hired hands sing a hymn of gratitude for life, the land, and the spring harvest. Stomp Your Foot is a rousing square dance number sung by the entire cast at Laurie's high school graduation party.
- Program note by San Luis Obispo Wind Orchestra concert program, 12 May 2012
The Promise of Living (1954) is a quintet that unites hobos and family at the end of the first act in celebration of the harvest and its traditions. Even without voices, the use of the folk hymn Zion’s Walls and Copland’s transparent scoring create a clear dramatic sequence. A dramatic gesture gives way to a quiet, lyrical passage, in which the gentle rise and fall of the melody suggests the unfolding sequence of wistful thoughts. Woodwinds gradually interject to create a sense of dialogue, both internal and, eventually, external.
The answer comes, this time fuller, building to a passage that is signature Copland: a smooth melody rooted in open harmonies, with bits of short repeated motives in call and response style which keep the music moving. Brass eventually join the scene, their chorale style underscoring the ritualistic role of the moment without losing the introspective quality that draws together community and individual, past and present.
- Program Note by Los Angeles Philharmonic
None discovered thus far.
None discovered thus far.
To submit a performance please join The Wind Repertory Project
- Southeast Missouri State University (Cape Girardeau) Wind Symphony (Martin Reynolds, conductor) – 19 October 2018
- University of Nebraska (Lincoln) Wind Ensemble (Carolyn Barber, conductor) – 4 October 2017
- United States Army Field Band (Washington, D.C.) (Jim R. Keene, conductor) - 1 April 2017 (Hot Springs Village, Ark.)
- University of Hawaii at Manoa Wind Ensemble and University of Hawaii Chamber Singers & Concert Choir (Jeffrey Boeckman, conductor) – 20 October 2013
Works for Winds by this Composer
- Appalachian Spring (arr. Morita) (1944)
- Appalachian Spring (arr. Patterson) (1944)
- "Buckaroo Holiday" from Rodeo (tr. Megan)
- "Buckaroo Holiday" from Rodeo (tr. Sudduth)
- Canticle of Freedom (arr. Duffy) (2000)
- Celebration (arr. Lang) (1938/1945)
- Ceremonial Fanfare
- A Copland Portrait (arr. Grundman) (1986)
- A Copland Tribute (arr. Grundman) (1986)
- Danzón Cubano (tr. Rogers) (1949/2000)
- Down a Country Lane (tr. Patterson) (1962/1991)
- El Salón México (tr. Hindsley) (1939/1972)
- Emblems (1964)
- Excerpts from "Appalachian Spring" (arr. Longfield) (1944)
- Fanfare for the Common Man (1942/1944)
- Fanfare for the Common Man (arr. Longfield) (1942/1944/2007)
- Finale from "Symphony No. 3" (trans. Patterson) (1946/)
- Hoe Down from "Rodeo" (arr. Moss)
- Hoe Down from "Rodeo" (tr. Rogers)
- Inaugural Fanfare
- Letter from Home (arr. Belski) (1944)
- A Lincoln Potrait (tr. Beeler) (1942/1951)
- Old American Songs (arr. Moss) (1950/2006)
- Old American Songs (arr. Silvester) (1950/2001)
- Old American Songs, Set II (arr. Duffy) (1952/2001
- Our Town (arr. Singleton)
- An Outdoor Overture (1938/1948)
- Preamble for a Solemn Occasion (1949/1974)
- The Promise of Living (arr. Curnow) (1954/2012)
- The Promise of Living (tr. Duffy) (1954/2000)
- The Promise of Living (tr. Hile) (1954)
- The Promise of Living (tr. Singleton) (1954/2002)
- Quiet City (arr. Hunsberger) (1941/1992)
- The Red Pony (1969)
- Scenes from "Billy the Kid" (arr. Hilliard) (1941/2000)
- Symphony No. 3. See: Finale from "Symphony No. 3"
- Themes from "An Outdoor Overture" (arr. Curnow) (1938/2014)
- Three Excerpts from "Our Town" and "Simple Gifts" (arr. Cohen)
- Variations on a Shaker Melody (1960)
- Waltz and Celebration (arr. Lang) (1944/1972)
- Copland, A.; Duffy, T. (2000). The promise of living : From The Tender Land [score]. Boosey & Hawkes: New York.
- Thomas Duffy website Accessed 9 April 2017