• Judith Weir
  • The Sweet Primroses (2015)

  • Chester Music Ltd (World)

Commissioned by the University of Birmingham for the CrossCurrents Festival 2016. First performance on 20th February 2016 by Lucy Schaufer (mezzo-soprano) and Christopher Yates (viola) in the Elgar Concert Hall, Bramall Music Building, University of Birmingham.

  • va
  • Mezzo Soprano
  • 3 min

Programme Note

Folk music is above all an effort of memory, and so I challenged myself to write down as much as I could recall of one of my favourite English folk songs, 'The Sweet Primroses', without consulting any of the recordings (aural or written) I possess. As a result, the mezzo here sings a simple narrative with many gaps (but, just about, covering the main points of the story). The viola (playing a much more extreme version of the music) represents the recesses of my memory and my strenuous efforts to remember a song I "know very well".